“PussyCake” is a film for a very particular audience. But, if you’re a part of that audience, it’s virtually impossible not to love it.
PussyCake is bloody mayhem at its finest.
It’s a balls-to-the-wall, gore-soaked splatterfest with the added bonus of being female-driven and featuring a touching and genuinely authentic lesbian love story.
Be honest. What’s the least exciting and stimulating part of any horror film? Can we agree it’s the requisite chunk of long exposition where we find out the “why” surrounding the horrific, unexplained events? It’s rarely as much fun as just watching the weird stuff happen.
Sure, we think we need a reason for absolute insanity. But what if we just accepted that sometimes crazy shit happens, and we don’t need to know why? What if, instead, we could spend every precious minute of a film glued to the edge of our seats while being offered up a nonstop, adrenaline-fueled barrage of everything we really love about the genre?
That’s a question PussyCake asks and answers with gleeful, wild abandon.
The bulk of what happens in the film’s brisk 80-minute runtime remains unexplained, makes little to no sense, and offers almost nothing in the way of satisfying narrative structure. That sounds like a criticism. It’s not.
In another film, that would be a glaring and unforgivable flaw. But PussyCake has exactly one goal, and that’s to entertain. It doesn’t want to make you think. It doesn’t care about making you feel (too deeply, anyway).
PussyCake just wants to make you stand up and scream, “Hell, yeah!” And I’ll be damned if it doesn’t succeed in spades.
We begin with a quick cold open in which the teenage son of a missing scientist is trying to recreate his dad’s research into parallel dimensions to bring him back from wherever he disappeared. Just when it looks like he may have succeeded, we realize his dad has not returned in the same shape he left.
He appears zombified, covered in a weird goo-like substance with some sort of milky bile oozing out of his mouth. To make matters worse, the mom is infected, too.
It’s less than ten minutes of the film, and it’s all you really need to know about the madness soon to unfold. That’s a good thing because it’s all the backstory you’ll get. Some sort of strange portal to another dimension has been opened, and alien-like creatures are now turning people into gory, goopy, vomit-spewing zombies.
From here on out, shit will get weirder and weirder, and none of it will make any sense. But I urge you to just accept it. Give into the confusion and chaos, and just strap in for the wild — and wildly fun — run.
After our brief setup, we meet our main cast: an all-girl, ultra-glam indie rock band (Elle, Sara, Juli, and Sofi) and their female manager Pato. After a successful show and some killer tunes, Pato tells the girls she’s arranged a performance in front of record label executives. This could catapult the titular PussyCake (best band name ever!) to stardom.
They load up the van and head to the gig. But when they get there, the town looks deserted, and no one is at the venue to greet them. Their phones don’t work, and Pato can’t get a hold of her friend Simon, who arranged the gig.
Sofi and Pato head to Simon’s house to figure out what’s happening, while girlfriends Elle and Sara stay behind. Meanwhile, the delightfully bubbly Juli drops some acid and heads to the beach — in a particularly enjoyable scene with great music and visuals.
We’re now 20 minutes in, and it’s the last point in the film when you’ll have time to catch your breath.
The remaining hour is a gonzo goregasm that never slows down and refuses to let you down. Every minute is more insane than the last, and it’s both satisfyingly gruesome and wickedly fun. A real sense of joy and playfulness permeates the film, and it even has a surprising amount of heart for a flick buried in blood and guts.
I’d call it the perfect popcorn flick, except trust me and skip the popcorn.
This flick is ultra-gory, gooey, and gross — and I mean really gross. Instead of chomping into flesh, these zombies prefer to vomit thick, white goo into the mouths of their victims. Repeatedly. It’s quite spectacular from a practical effects perspective. But don’t even think about eating while you watch.
I absolutely adored this spunky little film’s girl power and punk rock attitude. The effects are impressive — and plentiful — and all done in camera. It’s quite a feat, and it all looks so damn good. The makeup effects are outstanding, and the costumes are killer.
It’s all about the ladies in this film, which I love, and the cast is fantastic.
These are characters you care about and root for, even with virtually no time spent on character development. They are badass women but aren’t caricatures or simple sexy fodder for the male gaze. They feel sincere and grounded.
There’s not a moment of this film that isn’t endlessly engaging, thanks to the manic action and stellar performances.
This is my first experience watching a film by Argentinian director Pablo Parés. But, apparently, he’s kind of a big deal in his native country, as well as being a huge horror nerd.
He has over 30 short films and features under his belt, and his passion for gore-soaked, practical effects-driven films like The Evil Dead really shines through.
If PussyCake was a real band (why the hell is this not a real band?), I’d be lining up to buy tickets and t-shirts.
If you read this review and thought, “That sounds like it could be fun,” believe me when I tell you it is entirely that much fun. You definitely have to enjoy low-budget, B-movie monster movies where practical, gross-out effects take center stage and pesky things like plot development take a back seat. Arthouse, this is not.
What it is, however, is a hell of a good time.
Check out PussyCake now on SCREAMBOX, an impressive new streaming service dedicated to die-hard horror fans. And I know it feels like there’s an endless array of streaming platforms. But finding really great, truly original horror content is still depressingly difficult. SCREAMBOX is very affordable, just $4.99 a month (even cheaper if you pay for three months at a time or purchase an annual subscription). And you can get 30 days absolutely free. Plus, you can stream it on iOS, Android, Prime Video, YouTube TV, Comcast and screambox.com.