Review of the Year : The Taint

The traditional review of the year features films released in 2011 but there's a lot more to last year than the new releases.  2011 saw some excellent films but it also the unearthing of cinematic gems we would all love to share and it's the best of these two worlds that I would like to shine a light on.  As it's my blog I'm taking the liberty of giving myself two films of the year.  The first is 2011's most entertaining horror/comedy that saw more dongs than the opening moments of a Rank film.


The film is collaborative brain child of Drew Bolduc and Dan Nelson, it's got well endowed Zombies and loads of rocks.  It is remarkably the most enjoyable cinematic experience I had in all the three hundred and sixty five days of the year, I wanted nothing more than to watch it again the second it was finished and have longed for more every day since.


Certificate: 18 advised (TBC)
Running time: 75 mins
Director: Drew Bolduc & Dan Nelson
Starring: Drew Bolduc, Colleen Walsh, Cody Crenshaw
Genre: Horror/Comedy
Format: Download/DVD
Country: USA

There’s little that makes you wince and excuse yourself from a room like the term ‘low budget horror’. Many directors, writers, actors have been responsible for some terribly unforgettable frighteners. Then there’s The Taint.


With the entire city poisoned by tainted water the men are turned into sexually charged, well hung zombies while the women are little more than objects for the man folks intentions, which are not always sexual. Enter stage right the few survivors on their quest for a cure or a route out of town. Phil O’Ginny (played by Bolduc) is a cross between Napoleon Dynamite and Rick Grimes is little short of fantastic, always quirky and with a screen presence that most $20M a movie actors would kill for.  He holds the audiences' attention as both leading male and co-director. Colleen Walsh is the Sigourney Weaver of the peace but with an underlying psychosis which is never fully diagnosed and is excellent and is a wonderful reminder of the sort of leading lady that Jack Hill would strive to case.  The supporting case all prove to be strong, accomplished and at ease with both their roles and delivery making it really easy to relax and enjoy the film which is something of a rarity with low budget indie flicks.  Cody Crenshaw as the awesomely costumed Houdini is only rivalled by Will Towles portrayal of three characters including the brilliantly named Alligator Fuckhouse.


The cinematography of this horror comedy, which couldn’t have cost more to make that Colin though with most of it’s budget probably spent on fake sperm, is excellent. It’s a genuine joy to see a film and film makers who’s cinematography and editing represent the personalities of those involved and echoes the discontinuity of Oliver Stone’s Natural Born Killers. Coupled with an excellent score and one liners that are verging on genius The Taint has many strong strings to its bow.  The dialogue is inspired and in many moments have shades of David Mamet to it as it's almost too cool but only almost.



The one issue with the film is obviously the script, though the ridiculous premise is completely brilliant the script suffers from some pacing issues, particularly in the second act and there’s almost no character development. In a normal film this would be something of a deal breaker but the lack of character development is almost endearing.  One reviewer has remaked that they "needed to watch the film again to make sure they hadn't just dreamt it" which must be seconded as the ease of which the film flows and the use of images in The Taint is truly masterful.



There are several real talents involved in the making of The Taint and to boot it is easily the most entertaining low budget film since Peter Jackson’s Bad Taste and his career has ended up ok. Rarely is there a low budget title that makes me wish I was involved in the making of the film and then instantly makes me want to watch it again. The Taint will not change your life, it’s not an amazing scripted epic tour of an indie flick but who really wants that?  There's enough film students out there trying and failing at that.  No what it is, is one of the most enjoyable films made in 2010 and you will watch in 2011. Bolduc and Nelson are some serious talent for story telling, Bolduc's 2008 directorial debut The Godening! is well worth a watch also if you can get your hands on it. In the meantime learn the name and await the remake as this film is one that is destined for a larger audience.




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