Macabre…ish Horror Review: Mad God
Mad God, 2021/ 1 hr 23 min
A brutal tower stands center of a dark hellscape. Twisted metal, barbed wire and devastation. Cannons fire at a masked being, descending from the sky in a one man tube, attached to a cable. Passing layers or carcasses and hundreds of stone statues, into a hole, in the bowels of the city.
The capsule finally lands in a post apocalyptic landscape and the Assassin exits. Among the wreckage lives monsters and tiny gnomes which are immediately crushed under his boot.
He had a map and binoculars and seems to spot what he’s looking for, a house on a hill. Violent images shine through the windows and a ghastly monster comes out at the sound of a trap being set off by some twisted, unrecognizable creatures. The monster yanks the creature up and hacks it to pieces with a cleaver.
Meanwhile, the assassin, yanks a chord and the ground opens up and he drops inside. It looks like the rusted bowls of a ship but a hatch opens into what can only be a lab. A lab with more disturbing creatures inside. He closes the door and keeps going down the hall to a room full of giant ‘people’ who are being executed. Under their giant chairs their bowels empty and below them is another ghastly creature, consuming the excreta.
The assassin boards an elevator that passes through it’s cavernous body, a chamber of bladders fill as the creature swallows.
An ancient machine, below, stamps out an army of beings, drones. That are equally workers and grist for the mill. Many build, haul and clean as just as many are tipped into the fire as fuel or crushed under and ground in machinery. Many land in a huge piles, just to be scooped up and carted off.
A factory processes giant larvae and grinds them into paste. Massive meat monsters are strapped down and processed. Everything is covered in filth and cruelty drives everything. Everything alive, is a hideous monster. Over the loud speaker is baby talk. On the monitor is a hideous mouth, mouthing the sounds coming out of the speakers.
And the assassin, makes his way through all of this and through another trap door. Down a long and steep flight of stairs, it’s pitch black. More putrid creatures live here and inexplicably, piles and piles of suit cases, one of which is full of dynamite. As the assassin sets the timer, a huge monster attacks him and drags him away.
In a theatre, an audience watches as the assassin is stripped behind a screen. Below are untold numbers of rooms, each with a victim who is currently being tortured or already dead.
A surgeon, enters one room in particular and bisects the assassin, brutally ripping open his chest and obliterating the organs. The abdominal cavity is full of treasure, coins, jewelry and notes, gore is splashed all around. They seem to be searching for something in particular. And they find it, some kind of monstrous hairy larva.
Afterward, they drill a hole in the assassin’s head, and drop a camera into the hole. With the monitor on, the surgeon watches and there’s a whole other world and it’s winter. A human man with very long nails looks over a map that was created by stooped and gnarled witches.
Walking through a room full of ‘soldiers’ he hands the map off to the one in the capsule. The capsule is then lowered and the man sends a message over telegram.
The capsule lands in a post apocalyptic nightmare and the assassin follows the map through the wreckage. The assassin finds random old vehicles and traverses his way through the maze of wreckage, blight, war and monsters.
Fields of crosses topped with skulls and a still very active war is happening as the assassin drives through active bombings and storms. The assassin arrives to a gate that leads to a road that spirals down into the Earth.
Back at the newly born hairy pupae, it is hand delivered by a nurse to a giant tattered monster wearing a hat behind a massive metal door. As the monster walks, doors slide open ahead and close behind and through the hall of statues it goes, the creature crying the whole way.
A twisted and bent alchemist, stops two giant ogres from fighting, tends his psychedelic worm garden and tidies his lab. Just in time for the tattered hat monster to arrive with the crying larva. He takes out a tome and the larva is put into a mechanical press and squeezed, the fluid is then fired in a kiln, transformed into a gold bar and ground into a bowl of glitter. Which is handed off to the tattered hat monster, who then tosses it into space. The cosmos are born.
All of society is rebuilt but then a couple kids detonate dynamite during a war and everything is destroyed again. The cycle of rebirth and destruction continues.
This film was written, produced and directed by Phil Tippett and it took 30 years to create. It is a stop motion, experimental horror and everywhere you look is something disturbing. Amazingly grotesque and graphic monsters and creatures. Graphic violence and death. Everything, even things that would be considered neutral, is graphic, over the top and serves the post apocalyptic atmosphere well. I can see why it took decades, there was an incredible amount of work put into this.