This week on the B movie docket is Society
B movies are the glue stuck in between all the other genres, oftentimes refusing to conform to any particular genre presets. Some but not all of the hallmarks of a B movie include scripts that read like they were written by a room full of eighth-graders, poor visual effects, cringe-inducing dialogue, low budget production design, and zany plot contrivances. You’re aware of the hallmarks, right? B-movies often reek of amateur flair. Thought you were about to watch a great white shark hunted in dramatic fashion like only Steven Spielberg can deliver? Nope, this is Sharknado.
Why do we love B movies? I think B movies are comforting. You know what you’re about to watch is bad. If you’re fortunate it may be so bad that it’s good. You’ll often scratch your head trying to work out the plot. Out of the many good films you’ve seen, I bet you can talk with more vigor about the worst ones you’ve seen. They’re unforgettable. There’s something comforting about that I think. Besides they’ve been around just as long as the movie industry.
Believe it or not, chances are there’s a B movie for you. So I compiled a list of 50 B movies you must see before you die. No decade is off-limits. No rating is too taboo. For the next 49 weeks, I will introduce and recommend a B movie for your viewing pleasure. Yes, these are exciting times indeed my fanatical friends.
WEEK 32 – Society
This week at 50 B Movies, I present the 1992 film Society. It’s a film that reminds me of another B movie. That film being 1988’s They Live. That film starred professional wrestler Roddy Piper. Sadly, Society does not feature any professional wrestlers. But there is one scene with a big burly woman on a beach, but I do not think that counts.
Society is a slow burn that ignites in fireworks at the end. Trust me. Sit through all the vintage sexual innuendo on display and you’re in for a real treat. Yes, way past the beach scene featuring more up angle shots at nubile women than the entire Transformers franchise. Make it to the end, and Society will not disappoint. Just imagine walking in on your parents having an entanglement with the monster from John Carpenter’s The Thing.
Here’s the synopsis – A Beverly Hills teen (Billy Warlock) discovers his parents are part of a gruesome orgy cult for the social elite.
Watch this one expecting to be humored and utterly grossed out.
The story starts simple enough. Soon after our introduction to Billy Warlock, we meet his pal. The buddy has something shocking to disclose to Billy. See, while Billy’s ben busy skirt chasing the upper crust of Beverly Hills. His buddy has been stalking the living s*** out of Billy’s sister. What he confronts Billy with is quite disturbing. What starts out as a simple audio recording of his parents discussing the birds and the bees with Billy’s sister goes full horrific when we hear the sister consume her date.
And not in some cute fashion. Because as the film roles on it soon becomes clear that things are not what they seem in Beverly Hills. It is very much like the adaptation of Bret Easton Ellis’ Less Than Zero. Here people are jaded and blood thirsty. Yet still they are prey for something far more sinister that walks around hidden right in the plain sight of Beverly Hills.
Most of the plot focuses on Billy unraveling the horrifying thread of truth. That he has been so pampered and preoccupied with putting notches on the ol’headboard that he has grown blissfully unaware of the danger lurking around him.
It’s not long before Billy’s revelations grow into downright obsession. He interrupts the school assembly. And generally, goes about like Chicken Little screaming the sky is falling. Of course, no one believes him. Not in a movie like this. That would not be entertaining. And it is entertainment we demand.
So, the show marches on to a grotesque conclusion. Society truly embodies the term body horror. There are visuals that if presented dramatically rather than over the top and cheeky would fit seamless into the work of director David Cronenberg’s early films. Seriously, I have never imagined some of the twisted body horrors on display. Thankfully, someone not only imagined them, but they made a movie showcasing it.