“Quagmire in Holland” proudly bills itself as a “psychedelic adventure.” In fact, the DVD box, which indicates that this movie has digitally remastered audio and video, makes the bold statement that it is “quite simply the world’s only 21st century psychedelic film experience.” It seems that the definition of “psychedelic” has changed. If the new definition involves sparse, amateurish computer animation and cheap editing effects set to a dull bar rock soundtrack, then the film’s claims are accurate. Otherwise, this is just a pointless bit of meandering that will be hard pressed to appeal even to the film crew’s family and friends.
The movie, which is more like a travel special for the mentally challenged, follows the “adventures” of two men in Europe (mostly Holland). There is the aging, loser cowboy (Rex Xanders) and his middle-aged, hanger-on buddy (Richard Kasper). They travel around asking people dumb questions about the missing windmills and eventually purchase some mushrooms, which is supposedly how the filmmakers came up with the psychedelic angle. That’s it. Dumb questions, wandering around, and legal drug purchases — this is not a movie.
To successfully film something like this, you need interesting people (not a dumb-a*s hipster wannabe cowboy who equates Harley Davidsons with the heavy metal crowd) and some kind of vision. Both things are lacking here, and that makes this film less interesting than a Hallmark made-for-television movie. It’s a disgrace to the psychedelic genre, Americans and filmmaking in general. Why it had to be digitally remastered is beyond me.
If drugs are to blame for this mess, then this is the best anti-drug message any group could hope to get across. Apparently drugs can dull the creative edges and make people boring. If that doesn’t scare you enough to stop using, nothing will.