KILLER NERD (1991)
posted 02/15/2013

Directed by:
Mark Steven Bosko, Wayne Alan Harold

Starring:
Toby Radloff ... Harold Kunkle
Heidi Lohr ... Sally
Richard Zaynor ... Jeff
Greg Miller ... Slick Dick

Country: USA
Runtime: 90 min
     
       
   

Killer Nerd gets two coffins and that is an awkward spot. The way I like to think about it is that the film is on the first rung of the ladder. It’s quite far from the top and just one rung above the ground. So we call these movies: mediocre, fair, all right, decent, not that bad… Unfortunately we have many such films on this site but we love these dumb children. With that said let’s jump into the story of Harold Kunkle.

Harold wakes up from a sex dream and heads to his boring generic office job. On his way there, two vandals identically dressed in blue jeans and black leather jackets taunt him at the bus stop and knock his books down. We meet his boring generic co-workers and you can probably guess what happens in the boring generic first act. He has a crush on Sally the receptionist, a quiet, semi-nerdy mousy girl that wears braces and plays coy but definitively likes to chase snake (we find this out later). Jeff is the office clown that is banging that ass (Sally) and chucking humiliating jokes at Harold like whipped cream pies to the face. There’s plenty of testosterone deep down inside Harold, a potent mountain lion just waiting to pounce on a piece of ass. The problem is that he’s clueless, and that’s where the self-help tapes come into play.

He sends out for the Slick Dick’s School of Cool package after seeing the infomercial late at night. He kisses the envelope and says "Slick Dick, do your stuff!". While he waits for the tapes we get some lame mom /son conversations which are definitively filler to extend the running time. They talk about choking on pie, how dad died of cancer, but was a good hunter, and about going to the psychiatrist for nerve medicine. When the shipment comes the stupid tapes emphasize three dumb key gestures to be cool. You have to have a cool gaze, flare your nostrils and jut your lip. Once Harold has this down he goes to get a new haircut. He tells the lady "I got a tiger by the tail and he’s mean, I got a stiff upper lip and a tight ass!". Thankfully the film offers some crazy sweet dialogue that makes it fun. He walks out with a new do that makes him look like an androgynous dyke. When he goes to buy flowers he tells the florist "Hey baby, I wanna scam some of your goods!" and the lady threatens to call the police.

He decides to pay Sally a late night visit, but Jeff is there boning her. He leaves without being noticed and heads to a dance club where he meets two loose girls. They all go to look for pot at an abandoned factory and the dealers turn out to be the two vandals from the beginning of the movie. He gets beat up and taunted some more. At home he goes through a psychotic breakdown and snaps! He has reached the breaking point and now is a good night for revenge. He goes to Sally’s place and (I kid you not) makes cat noises while on his hands and knees outside her window. Jeff goes out to check on things and literally loses his head, which Harold tosses on Sally’s bed. He throws acid on her face and I guess that kills her?!? He then kills his mother for letting dad beat him as a child. He makes her drink Draino and sinks a meat cleaver into her head. His last stop is at the factory. He kills the two crazy chicks off-screen. Then we have an unbelievably long and BORING cat and mouse sequence in the dark factory as he stalks the two punks that messed with him. In the end he captures them and makes their heads explode with some dynamite he found lying around?!?!

I remember loving this movie the first time I saw it with Jose. Toby Radloff, who plays Harold, really hits a home run. The whole movie pretty much rests on his shoulders and he brings out the nerd in spades! The gore is minimal and we get one pair of tits. The meat of the story is really seeing this character develop into a killer. The setup is close to an hour long where we see Harold go from confident and hopefull to vengeful and broken. The story takes you from point A to point B, without any twists in the road. You know what to expect. The real pleasure comes from Radloff’s performance and the awkward mood of the film.

I gave this movie two coffins because I felt there were several numb parts where I caught myself getting distracted and losing interest. The excitement slowly drained away. I still recommend you watch this because it is pretty good. Right now I’m going to let this movie age in my DVD shelves and bring it out again in maybe three to five years. Yes, some bad movies age into better things.

- Jorge Antonio Lopez

 

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