SPLATTER FARM (1987)
aka THE DEGENERATES
Directed by John Polonia, Mark Polonia, Todd Michael Smith
Written by John Polonia, Mark Polonia, Todd Michael Smith
Starring John Polonia, Mark Polonia, Todd Michael Smith, Jeff Seddon, Marion Costly, Bernice Tombs
With the release of RETURN TO SPLATTER FARM, I decided to do my homework and check out the original SPLATTER FARM and find out what exactly it was we were returning to. Turns out SPLATTER FARM was a Shot on Video flick from the wonder year of 1987. It’s a do it yourself-er shot by Polonia, who has since made 60 plus films, and starring himself and his twin brother John Polonia (who also had a hand in directing along with Todd Michael Smith). Smith also stars in the film as a suspicious handyman who works at the farm belonging to the Pelonia Twins’ aunt. With Aunt Lacey (Marion Costly) horny as a toad, the Polonia Twins must survive their summer vacation with their virginity intact as well as their lives as Alan (Smith) is a straight up cannibal murderer who uses the farm as his hunting grounds.
SPLATTER FARM is a fascinating little film in that it seems to have been made on no budget by three friends with a dream to make a splatter movie. The story isn’t original. It directly lifts from TEXAS CHAIN SAW MASSACRE and FRIDAY THE 13TH while injecting its own brand of sleaziness to the mix. The filmmaking is rough with the edits being rudimentary at best and the Polonia brother’s acting and lack of affect is quite infectious as the movie goes along. This is basically just a couple of late teenagers who love horror getting together and shooting a horror movie with what they had. I did this as a kid. I wanted to make a horror movie when I was in my late teens, but then something else distracted me and we only ended up shooting one or two scenes before scrapping the idea and going back to our video games. The thing about SPLATTER FARM is that the Polonias were committed not only to begin making a no budget horror film, but they also finished it. The results may be hamfisted, but dammit if that doesn’t impress me.
Of course, this was the eighties and practical effects gore was at its height. It looks as if everything from real animal parts to Halloween props skulls, to lasagna was used to make these dismembering and cannibal feastings as goppy and gooey as possible. There is a stomach-churning realness to the gore that shows where the Polonias interests were. There are all kinds of gross closeups of Alan chewing on innards and slicing people open.
SPLATTER FARM is true do it yourself gumption filmmaking and while it is rough to sit through in terms of quality filmmaking, it highlights the Polonia Brothers’ love for filmmaking. This is a love they stuck with and while it appears John Polonia isn’t with us anymore, Mark Polonia is stull making low budget horror to this day. That’s something worth recognizing. I admire the grit and gumption SPLATTER FARM had. It made me remember those teen summer days when I wanted to be a filmmaker and smile fondly that the guy is still doing it after all of these years.