Reed Kirkham (Stu Gash) is the head of Two-Fisted Films. In his youth, he was an idealistic filmmaker who won awards for excellence, but now he’s an exploitation producer of films with titles like “Space Pimp” and “Ragina Dentata” (a great idea for a film, incidentally). Kirkham is whoring out his latest trashy script, “Murderous Jack,” to some Japanese investors, ignoring his perky assistant Elaine (Dana Sheppard) and her arty script “The Misfortunate.” One night, after Elaine quits, Kirkham begins having ethical and internal problems, which reach a climax when his liver and lungs come to life, exit his body and take him hostage.
“My Body’s Revolting,” Scott P. Stanton’s thesis film at Florida State is a solidly written and directed effort that overcomes many of the usual student film stumbling blocks thanks to the hilarious and grotesque body effects courtesy of Tom Carruthers. Carruthers, a London-based monster-maker, worked on Blade 2 and “Event Horizon,” and while the human actors may be a tiny bit wooden, the creatures are pleasantly, disgustingly foamy. The body parts that emerge from Reed don’t look like the real thing, but they look fun. The Liver looks like a malignant, beady-eyed orange and speaks with a slightly random British accent. With his expressive eyes and scrawny little hands, the Liver is capable of choking a grown man, but sometimes he needs a splash or two of Scotch to keep him going. Reed’s intestines are disappointingly inarticulate, but his chain-smoking lung is a super sight-gag.
Reed himself, or rather Stu Gash, is a Tom Savini-looking over-actor in a style that fits well with the wild tone of the film. When he’s actually trying to sound intelligent or committed, he doesn’t work, but his exaggerated response to being held captive by his own viscera is perfect. As his assistant Elaine, Dana Sheppard is bland until the script requires her to rescue Reed, axe in hand.
Shot entirely at night, under mostly florescent lights, “My Body’s Revolting” has frequent problems with image color and consistency that inevitably rise from only having access to sets at irregular hours. The production design is also erratic, with some touches, like Reed’s trophy for artistic achievement, that just don’t work. But mostly viewers won’t remember those things. They’ll remember a lung in the shredder and a liver flying through the air with scissors in hand and they’ll remember being amused and disgusted…in a good way.