Dir: Wrye Martin + Barry Poltermann
Star: Tina Ona Paukstelis, Norman Moses, Flora Colier, Mildred Nierras

First off, it's not pronounced like Beavis + Butthead fans might imagine: try "Os-wong". Yeah, but what is it? A mythical Filipino creature that preys on unborn children, that's what - although this is set near, er, Milwaukee. How a clan of these monsters ends up there is unexplained, but despite this obstacle and a tiny budget, often obviously, the end result still has menace and some memorable moments. It centers on a heavily-pregnant surrogate mother (Paukstelis), who visits the family estate of the father (Moses); it's not long before she discovers things aren't quite as they seem. I guess the big clue is probably when she's attacked by the astonishingly-long tongue of her mother-in-law, a scene that ends, I'm not going to say. You wouldn't believe me, anyway.

It's all entirely laughable, makes little or no sense, and the tongue is about as convincing as a piece of rope. However, there's lots of conviction and enthusiasm, as well as a chainsaw-wielding madwoman. Plus, to paraphrase Margaret Cho, "And then there's the hoe"'ll understand when you see the film. If I seem somewhat reticent, it's because this is probably best viewed with no preconceptions. Or, being honest, expectations. It's hardly a lost classic, and invoking The Evil Dead is a stretch (there's a reason Sam Raimi has made Spiderman 2, while Martin + Poltermann, er, haven't), but as a silly cheapie, it's not bad. Certainly the best Filipino monster movie ever made in Wisconsin, that's for sure.

[Note: the DVD comes with a new 5.1 Dolby Digital soundtrack, which is perhaps the most badly-mixed I've ever heard: the dialogue is way too low, and the music way too loud. After two minutes, we went back to the old 2.0 one]

July 2004

Heh-heh-heh...he said 'Ass'
...and 'Wang'...
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