Writers: Peter Ward, Andrew Jones, Ian Paterson
Producers: Peter Ward, Andrew Jones, Ian Paterson
Cast: Peter Ward, Andrew Jones, Ian Paterson
Reviewed from: YouTube (link at bottom of review)
Despite being about a serial killer, and the title notwithstanding, Call Me a Psycho is not a horror film. Rather it is a cop comedy about a couple of likeable but not particularly efficient policemen tracking down an escaped homicidal lunatic.
What it also is, is a fascinating time capsule. Because this isn’t the 2008 film Call Me a Psycho - this was made in 1990. Turns out the 2008 film is a remake by the same guys, the ‘Superteam Productions’ trio of Peter Ward, Andrew Jones and Ian Paterson, who share three-way credits for writing and producing and directing this zero-budget epic.
And yet, as sometimes happens with these things, the enthusiasm of the film-makers overcomes their limitations and I actually enjoyed the film. Some parts are genuinely funny, mostly the bits which divert into Zucker-Abrams-Zucker-style surrealism: an alarm clock that makes bizarre noises, or a scene of a character typing in which he has three hands.
There’s not much by way of plot: the psycho escapes, the two cops try to track him down while he goes on a (largely off-screen) killing spree. Scenes were shot outside Feltham Police Station in West London and at a local video store, Terminal 5 Video, which has a Terminator 2 ad in the window. It’s the little background details like that which make this so fascinating. One character wears a Skid Row T-shirt, another is evidently a fan of Carter the Unstoppable Sex Machine. There is a trailer on TV for borderline mystical BBC sitcom Mulberry. And the soundtrack features a number of not-cleared for copyright songs including David Essex’s 1973 hit ‘Rock On’ and the Echo and the Bunnymen 1987 cover version of ‘People are Strange’.
The rating below should not, of course, be taken as any indication that this is, in any way, a ‘good’ film but it’s far from a terrible film and I have to give the film-makers props for doing what they did (which was at least something) with what they had available (which was nothing).
MJS rating: B