Movies Galore takes a look at director James Balsamo’s anthology “Hack Job” From 2011!

Written by David Strege

Hack Job

Brought To Us by Acid Bath Productions director James Balsamo I haven’t gone back and reviewed some of his earlier films since I started with Bite School which was in fact his fourth film but his first film it’s called Hack Job from 2011 and it is kind of an anthology film but it starts off kind of weird.

We have an actress speaking a poem and shortly after that we have supposedly a French director speaking in subtitles about his newest masterpiece while James BalsamoPlays a TV host by the name of James Argento  while some guy with a knife ends up beating up the French director whilel it looks like he pulls out a chainsaw and slices through his face. now the face looks slightly fake and starts to speak as the credits roll in…

So as the film begins truthfully we see that this French director has ended up in hell and we are introduced to Beelzebub who has said to call himself Bub (Youngren) as he is apparently the producer of the stories… Next to him as a character called Hunchy the Hunchback and a topless female victim hanging in the background…

So Bub says that he has made a script and he’s going to give them to two idiots and those two idiots just so happened to be Michael Shershenovich  and James Balsamo. Now the film goes to present-day Germany in a strip club where it looks like an older man is waving a gun talking about wishing that he was between a pair of tits….

So the first story in this anthology is called Tomb of the SS, Allen after getting drunk gets wrapped in toilet paper like a mummy by his mother and I believe his brother  or friend Steve as a joke. For some reason both Allen and a Professor Heart are on their way to Mumbai, I don’t know why Allen’s father has died but apparently there is a dig site in Mumbai where there has been discovered a tomb of some sort and there is a young lady An archaeologist by the name of Mindy Winters.  Meanwhile Soldier has crash-landed from the sound of his language he sounds Russian but looks like he is wearing an Israeli uniform.

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While Allen is visiting with Mindy he is attacked by a mummy and after having been attacked and realizing that it is strange that Professor Heart is alive and his father is dead something strange is going on. As it turns out his father’s warning about Professor heart wasn’t wrong as Mindy, Allen and another digger  were waylaid by the same Marauders that had apparently made his father Allen’s, meet with untimely death and not only were they just Marauders they were Nazis to boot. The professor forces Alan to go into the tomb only they run into the curse set upon the place to protect its treasure can Allen get out alive and save his precious Mindy from the toilet paper wrapped Undead…

In Earth is on the Menu, We have a restaurant run by a sleazy owner Duke, some employees that just can’t keep from  having sex in the back, Betty who was late for work who has to wait on a group of young men wear the leader Slick of the gnarly looking group seems to have the hots for her. Betty bumps into Butch Knocking something into the owner Duke and she’s fired.  Slick and his Goons go after Butch and try to scare him into not hanging around Betty but Betty jumps in and threaten Slick with a knife which helps Butch get away for the time being. meanwhile back at the restaurant a meteorite looking substance lands in a bathroom toilet somewhere near Duke and that’s when these green looking tentacles seemed to take over his body.   Butch on the other hand is going to the same Battle of the Bands That Slick and his goons are going to but beforehand he gets to spend time with Betty. the possessed Duke runs into a patron of the restaurant and the green tentacles end up taking over this large man’s body and shortly after this Patron who has been overtaken by this creature runs into a couple that is in a car the female giving the guy a blowjob and the creature seems to come out of the patron into the guy’s body and through the guy’s penis to the girls body and the guy gets out of the car and stumbles around in a daze.

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Later at the Battle of the Bands which is being held in a strip club a creature that looks like a large sandwich starts attacking the audience.   this part is hilarious because you can definitely see the strings working on these creatures tentacles but suddenly and alien creature who seems to be there to destroy the creature doesn’t seem to care about the human beings that he  Hurts in the process, ends up getting eaten anyways but there is a hilarious moment where before he gets swallowed he wipes his ass like he had forgotten to the last time he was in the bathroom. Betty is just about to get eaten when Butch gets up from being knocked over and somehow the sound of distortion seems to destroy the creature…

In between all of this is where Lynn Lowry shows up as  a talent agent, Or she is talking to another writer by the name of Giorgio she knows that he is a terrible  writer but evidently he is hot looking and she fantasizes about him well ridiculing James and Michael which is when the to show up and show her the script of Hack Job. Now her character Raves about the script and after James and Michael leave she thinks she knows exactly who she can show the script to  which I believe is the one and only Lloyd Kaufman. Now Lloyd Kaufman does not like the title of the script and instead shows us a fake trailer with a movie starring Toxie and Sergeant Kabukiman called Tromaville PD Spew.

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In The Mark, It starts out showing one of those  Street Preachers trying to gather change in front of a train terminal  who ends up trying to see Jesus a different way through the eye of a syringe needle. Which we then see him  get killed by his own Bible. next we are introduced to a TV evangelist selling his message Claiming that he was going to make a miracle happen by turning Johnny Walker a boy who had Polio since the day he was born and make him walk instead he does not and the priest just shoots him… We are then introduced to Mark who was dumped by his girlfriend who seems to have met someone else and got weirded out because of his obsession with astral projection and yet appears to be doing it with all kinds of guys…

The next morning after the rejection Mark wakes up with a priest collar in his hand and to a news report that a priest have been killed.  So Mark goes to the only person that he can talk to which is his sister. Lloyd Kaufman also returns as a rabbi in this story, The legendary and beautiful Debbie Rochon Shows up as an astral angel.  As it turns out the TV evangelist Theodore Halo is running the local drug ring pushing a drug called Crystal Christ and Mark is marked by the Beast for some unknown reason will he be able to find out what that Mark is before he is used for his divinely  evil purpose. And what do you know the infamous Fright Rags known for their cool memorabilia horror shirts gets a TV spot as a commercial in this film. Ultimately this mark that Mark has been given leads him to fight against the forces of evil will he be able to beat the Altar Boys and the evangelist drug lord and be able to meditate the message from the Japanese Jesus Christ…

You know for some reason I enjoy James Balsamo’s films but I suppose being his first effort out there in the film world from fan to director this wasn’t a bad first feature the special effects sucked balls but the cameos were awesome there was definitely a lot of nudity but I think that just adds to the atmosphere I will have to say that my favorite story in this anthology was Earth is on the Menu for it was a truly awesome paper mache monster on strings even though you could tell it was fake it was hilarious as hell,   on a side note though I understand the wraparound where James was given a script by the devil to help sell his script into the world and understand that there needed to be a few names to get his film out there but there was definitely a lot going on. I do understand that there was a metaphor in the third story about how selling Christianity like it was crystal meth maybe from a Catholic School point of view where people can get the wrong idea of Christ I can understand he was trying to portray a sort of anti-religious idea So I got what was trying to be portrayed at least.   Because the film was all over the place I don’t think this would be a film that everyone would like but I enjoyed the film for what it was. I do think that it was different that Balsamo shaved his goatee for that last story that almost didn’t look like a wig to me. If this sounds like a film that you would definitely watch and I suggest that you try to find the film on your own to watch. There was a lot of bad acting throughout the film but one of my favorite cameos in here was Lynn Lowery’s she played her part with over-the-top acting the way that I think that she was meant to and though I think that Debbie Rochon’s  character was a little disjointed I liked her character to even though it was short. I have to admit that you can’t miss Lloyd Kaufman in his cameos as well he definitely enjoys helping out independent filmmakers from time to time and he must have really enjoyed James Balsamo for he definitely had a lot of screen time. This anthology had a lot to take in and process but you can’t take films like this seriously you just have to enjoy the ride. I was entertained at but I suggest that you watch this film in stages to be entertained. I enjoyed it and will continue to watch Acid Bath Productions.

Here is the trailer:

Starring James Balsamo as James Argento / Allen / Butch / Mark, Michael Shershenovich asMike Fulci / The Russian / Pete, Dave Brockie as Duke / Defendor, Lynn Lowry as Talent Agent, Debbie Rochon as Astral Angel, Lloyd Kaufman as Rabbi Lloyd / Himself, Haroon Ahmad as Raja, Michael Balsamo as Steve / Johnny Walker, Christine Brulotte as Victim #1 Battle of the Banxs, Veronika Brussmannova as Betty, Keith J. Crocker as Himself, Dan E. Danger as Danny Danger / Mummy / Ronnie, Melissa Davanzo as Cowgirl / Domanatrix / shower girl, Fatt Dave as Fluffer, Dominae Drakonis as Monster Victim, Sparky Drakonis as Himself, Thomas Kyle Fiorillo as Altar Boy Leader, Sasha Gaulin as Ring Girl #3, Sasha ‘Fire Gypsy’ Gaulin as Round Three Girl, Brittany Guagneur as Archaeologist, Jarrell Jones as Darnell, Danny Karron as Pretentious Director / Harvy, Jon Keller as Lester, Michael Martinez as Giorgio, Michael Matteo as Ben, Keith Matturro as Himself, Kerri McConnell as Mindy / Donna / Angel, Chainsaw Mike as Slick, Cathy Nardone as Round two girl, Michael Perillo as Demon / Dave, Nicole Romanelli as Big Mouth Whore, Matt Routzahn as Rumble, Steven Schooley as Subway Junkie, Bob Socci as Gunther / Hunchy the Hunchback, Lucas Steffens as Disemboweled Donut Lover, Jeremy Sunderland as Raa the Pharaoh, James Terriaca as Jedediah, Angela Thompson as Machete Mama, Daniel Underhill as Hanz, Jennifer Valdes as Battle of the bands crowd victim, Robert Youngren as Professor Heart / Bub.

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