Aug 15, 2012


Shitty Flicks is an ongoing column that celebrates the most hilariously incompetent, amusingly pedestrian, and mind-bogglingly stupid movies ever made by people with a bit of money, some prior porn-directing experience, and no clue whatsoever. It is here you will find unrestrained joy in movies meant to terrify and thrill, but instead poke at your funny bone with their weird, mutant camp-girl penis.

WARNING: I tend to give away major plot points and twist endings in my reviews because, whatever. Shut up.

A movie should not be judged by its synopsis. Despite how absurd any particular scenario for a film might sound in the very early scripting stages, the majority of these odd-sounding concepts usually become fantastic cinema. Spell out the basics of some of your favorite films and you’ll see that I’m right.

Man dresses up as giant bat and chases a clown. Sounds dumb, doesn’t it? But that’s Batman, friends, and it’s awesome.

Guy from Moonlighting with no shoes kills entire team of terrorists led by Alan Rickman: Die Hard.

Group of forty-somethings own “ghost busting business” and they make a lot of money because New York has so many ghosts in it and at the end they fight a giant man made of marshmallow: Xanadu.

The point is this: “a bed that eats people” is one of those wonderful concepts that gave birth to an even wonderfuller movie (in the bad way). All you need to know about the plot of Death Bed: The Bed That Eats is in its title.

The movie was written, directed and shat out by George Barry in 1972, assembled in 1977, and then forgotten about soon after. Seriously, the man who wrote, directed, shot, edited and solicited the tale of Death Bed: The Bed That Eats literally forgot the movie existed, or at least claims to.

Because no company wanted to touch a movie like this with a ten-foot death bed, nor spend the money to blow it up from its current size of 16mm to 35mm (the standard exhibition size), the movie languished in a tin can for years. Eventually a print of it somehow leaked and became an extremely popular bootlegged item in foreign territories. George Barry stumbled across this information a few years back, said, “Nice! I MADE this!” and got the movie released on a cult DVD label in 2003, more than thirty years after the movie was shot.

Death Bed: The Bed That Eats regales the audience with the story of The Bed, an old bed that resides in an abandoned mansion and whose only companionship comes in the form of a forlorn ghost who is trapped in a painting and provides us with exposition in the form of morose narration. Turns out this man was an artist who had grown very sick many moons ago, and as he was lying in The Bed, he painted it, since he would most likely die in it. Then The Bed ate him, transporting his soul (somehow) to the painting. The same thing happened to Bob Ross, who died years ago and is now stuck in a boring painting of a grey mountain.

Every once in a while, a group of travelers will enter the abandoned mansion in which this bed resides, usually end up lying on the bed for a nap or for a bit of the sex, and end up getting sucked into The Bed’s inner goo, which looks like a fish tank filled with piss. Once you get sucked into The Bed, you end up in said tank where you moan and writhe until you succumb to the piss and it turns you into a grinning store-bought skeleton. 

That’s…pretty much it.

“Why would you even watch this movie?”

Hey, fuck you.

Death Bed: The Bed That Eats is told in four parts: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and The Just Desserts. I’m not even kidding; there are title cards and everything.

The movie begins with roughly 30 seconds of complete black, complemented by munching and chewing sounds. So, not even 30 seconds into the movie, you’re already saying, “what the fuck is this?” 

We then meet Breakfast: a young hippie couple going on some sort of picnic…on the bed.

The two unveil their meal fit for kings: two apples, a bottle of wine and a bucket of fried chicken.

“I’m hungry!” cries the girl. No time for food, though, as these two have some serious heavy petting to do. They kiss and hug, and while in their awkward embrace, The Bed licks its bed lips and prepares for its first meal in a long time (in bed years).

The Bed starts off its meal with an appetizer and expels orange foam (Bed Tongue) over the picnic food brought by the couple and sucks it down into its gooey piss goo; first the apples, then the chicken, and finally completing its free meal with the bottle of wine. And yes, despite the fact that this movie isn’t trying to be funny, the bed burps. Not only that, it also makes slurping noises when eating and drinking, and it even laughs sometimes. At one point, it even downs a bottle of Pepto Bismol, but no—we’re still not kidding around here—we’re dead serious.

Ohhh, mmm, the couple, now in their extreme height of animal passion, wants to eat some cold chicken before going back to their dry humping and finger banging. But instead of putting their hands into a bucket of cold greasy chicken, they grab only a handful of bones and apple cores.

Hey, how’d that happen?

Hey, do you care?

Because they don’t, and they go right back to kissing.

But wait, isn't spontaneous consumption suspicious?

Well, see, the boyfriend states, “Must’ve been a mistake.”

Right? It happens. I’ve ordered chicken before and gotten generic sitcom garbage.

“Oh well, I’m not hungry anyway!” cries the same girl that cried she was hungry seriously 20 seconds ago. The Bed then closes its bed curtains of doom and the couple screams as they may or may not be eaten. Who really remembers at this point? I watch shit like this for fun, and you can’t tell me it doesn’t fuck holes in my brain.

The Apple's dream of being in a guy-girl threesome
was about to be ruined by some premature ejaculatory foam.

Throughout the movie, the painting ghost will go on to unfold the origins of The Bed, and the needlessly complicated history adds a bit of charm to this wonderful story of The Bed of Death. A long time ago, an unexplained, intangible spirit of the earth fell in love with a human woman and it constructed this bed in hopes of making love to her with its spirit cock. However, the Supreme Court of the Spirits ruled this sort of union un-Spirit in definition, and the union was destroyed after the woman was killed. The spirit cursed the bed, creating The Bed, and fled, checking himself into Spirit Rehab for depression, aka the surrounding woods of the house. And thus The Bed has been sitting ever since, waiting to snack on some delicious asshole.

Later, a carload of young gals pulls up alongside the titular bed's house, which is inside and patiently waiting for some road-weary travelers to plant their butt on its shockingly clean sheets so it can “tap that ass” directly into its bed mouth.

When the car first pulls up, there are definitely only two people within, but thanks to some sloppy editing, a third suddenly appears in the back seat. Or perhaps I’m just mistaken. I’m sure the man who wrote Death Bed knows what he’s doing.

These three girls—Diane, Sharon and Susan—will serve as the crux of the story. While the plot will meander like Pulp Fiction and tell the tale of the bed from different time periods, we eventually return to our women to see what’s the deali-o.

Susan decides to sleep in The Bed while Sharon and Diane wander the grounds and have a lesbian picnic of highly suggestive foods like sausage and large pickles. Hopefully they saved Susan some food, because she’s going to be hungry when she wakes up from her nap. Oh wait, no she won’t, because The Bed methodically undresses the girl and eats her after she inexplicably dreams of her two companions feeding her a plate of bugs.

Jeff stared in disgust at the receipt, seeing he had been
overcharged during his recent trip to Big Stuff For Tiny Doll People.

We then take a break and we meet Dinner, my favorite characters in the film. They consist of three awesomely, 70s fashions-dressed men and their whore companion. Whore goes to The Bed immediately with one of the men and they get eaten.

Later, the other two men play cards and wear incredibly fake looking mustaches…on THE BED! At one point, The Bed attempts to bite the mustachioed man on his caboose, so he takes out his gun and fires shots into The Bed. And by shooting, I mean that he literally just holds the gun, figuring that the “pop” sound effect will be added later, so he doesn’t even attempt to mime the motion of the bullet’s expulsion.

Back to Lunch, Sharon and Diane are unable to find Susan, so they assume she has run off to be by herself. Sharon decides to go looking for Susan while Diane plans to get into The Bed for a nap. And nap she does—TO DEATH. She awakens from another laughably abstract dream to see that The Bed has begun swallowing her legs, and probably making icky sucking sounds.

Diane pulls herself free somehow and hurtles herself to the floor, and for the next 10-15 minutes, we’re forced to watch her slowly, slowly, slowly pull herself across the floor towards the door. Luckily her escape takes so fucking long that Sharon, back from searching for Susan, hears her cries and attempts to help. As the audience breathes a heavy sigh of relief, knowing Diane is safe, The Bed whips a sheet at her leg, encircling around her like a creepy uncle’s hand at Christmastime, and eats her black ass. Sharon’s valiant attempt to pull her friend out of The Bed’s grasp results only in yanking off Diane’s goddamned finger, somehow. Just as Sharon is also about to meet her bed fate, The Bed associates her beauty with that of the woman the Spirit loved so many years ago and it spares her. And just in time, too, because Sharon’s brother, who is not given a name in the movie, shows up for no reason.

After listening to Sharon’s outlandish tales of The Bed, the brother takes out his knife and stabs The Bed. Wrong move to make, Guy Who Looks Like Tim Robbins In Jacob’s Ladder, as The Bed spews forth a fine lather of Bed Goo and the man’s hands are instantly eaten, relegating him to calmly wave his brand new skeleton hands in front of his face as he looks on with a certain dreamlike awe and blandly states, “there’s no flesh.”

Tim Robbins had dropped acid plenty of times before,
but it was never like this...never like this...

(TRIVIA! While watching Brother wave his bone hands in front of his face, this will give you time to recognize this man that you grew up watching. That’s right! Corey’s dad from "Boy Meets World"!)

Brother asks Sharon if she could do him a solid—if she could wrench his skeletal hands free from his body and throw them in the roaring fireplace. She complies, because why not?

The trapped painting ghost finally decides to be of some use and tells Sharon how she can defeat The Bed. Sharon, who resembles the dead chick that The Bed loved, has to kill herself, which would, for unknown reasons, resurrect The Bed’s great love. So, after dragging Corey’s Dad to a field, she offs herself, resurrecting the girl that looks like her. Recently Resurrected Lost Love of The Bed begins to inexplicably fuck Corey’s dad in the middle of this field and The Bed gets so depressed that it burns itself to bed death. And thank Christ, because the narrator is finally freed from his painting prison, as if that was ever anyone’s concern to begin with.

So everyone wins, really.

Sharon is dead.

Diane is dead.

Susan is dead.

I guess Corey’s Dad is alright, although he’ll be forced to live out the rest of his life with no hands—but he’ll have an amazing story to drunkenly tell at the bar until he gets his ass handed to him for shattering all the expensive beer steins with his metal claws.

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