Old 08-02-2004, 02:00 PM
FREAKED! (aka Hideous Mutant Freakz)

Lately I've been overly obsessing over a little cult comedy made 11 years ago titled "FREAKED." I haven't watched it since I was 14 years old, but I do remember it was GLORIUS.

Alex Winter plays an egotistical actor who travels to South America on behalf of a company that developed this chemical that can, I guess, mutate things. Anyway upon his arrival he meets a mad scientist (an AWESOME character played by Randy Quaid) who's actually the ring leader of a freak show. It turns out that all of these freaks were engineered using the company's chemical. One thing leads to another and Skuggs (Quaid) turns Alex Winter into a hideous mutant freak aptly named "The Beast Boy!"

Does anyone remember this GEM? I haven't seen it in forever and I can't find it anywhere except EBay...and it's region fucking 2!

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Old 08-02-2004, 03:38 PM
Yeah I remember this crazy ass movie.Back when I was in high school my History teacher was always talking about this movie and quoting shit from it.Wasnt there a cow man or something and didnt they have a talk show or something in it.I havent seen it for a while and havent seen it for sell anywhere but they should.
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Old 08-02-2004, 09:45 PM
Originally posted by Tarman
Wasnt there a cow man or something and didnt they have a talk show or something in it.
That's the one. Brooke Shields was the talk show host.
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Old 08-02-2004, 10:00 PM
Great to see someone else mention this underrated, passed-up wierd spooge fest. It may not have been the greatest thing in the world, but it was visual, offered interesting characters, great corny acting, and a machine-gun directorial style by Mr. Winter. One of the saddest injustices of the entertainment industry is the virtually ignored talent and genuis of Alex Winter. His too-short-lived tv series "Idiot Box" was ahead of it's time and was a loving homage to great sketch comedy reminiscent of the old SCTV days. Hopefully some of you got the chance to see this hilarious and creative outing, though it played on MTV for only one season.

I hear he primarily works behind the scenes these days, which is cool, but it would be oh so nice to see this great guy in front of the cameras again.

Funny side note: Back in '93 I was in a Suncoast Pictures store ( I believe the Mall of America) looking over their then budding action figure section, when on one of the shelves, I come across - lo and behold - the 8 1/2 inch plastic likenesses of the characters of FREAKED!!! They were huge. They came by themselves, no packaging. No identifying tags. They were partially hidden by other figures more popular of that time. I asked a an employee nearby when the hell they got them in and was their other FREAKED merchandise in the store. She looked at the figures, and said, "oh. Is THAT what they're from?! I had no idea. The shipment came in yesterday with these wierd dolls and there was no packaging information with them. We had no idea what they were from. So we just put them out anyway."

I couldn't believe it. I took one home with me nonetheless.
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Old 08-02-2004, 10:05 PM
Oh my GOD! FREAKED action figures?! I MUST HAVE! Which one did you get?
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Old 08-03-2004, 12:30 AM
This movie was awesome. My favorite scene is the one where they are all flashing back to the day they got "freaked" and then the camera pans over to the hammer. The hammer's flashback reveals that he was once a wrench and everyone feels so sorry for it. Comedic gold.
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Old 08-03-2004, 08:39 AM
haha, check this out

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Old 08-03-2004, 08:41 AM
Also is this the film?? http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...ayphotohosting
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Old 08-03-2004, 08:46 AM
This movie is one of my favorite comedies. Hilariously scripted and eons above most films on a visual level. A hysterical romp.
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Old 08-03-2004, 09:47 AM
Originally posted by Murderous Squad
Also is this the film?? http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...ayphotohosting
That's the one, Squad. It is definitley a sleeper-classic. It needs a loaded DVD and make itself known.

On the other hand, it is refreshing to know that you've seen one of the greatest comedies of all time (-not- exagerrating) and no one knows what the hell you're talking about.

Those monster legs are awesome...I wish I could buy them.
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Old 08-03-2004, 12:40 PM

Eureka! I must have them!
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Old 08-03-2004, 01:18 PM
Here's a cool article I just found on an Alex Winter fansite, it's ALL about Freaks and he even mentions Bill and Ted 3 (I'm sure he was joking though). And for some reason all the swearing is censored...

Lots of mistakes here, though. They keep calling the Dog Boy Juan, when it was actually Ortiz. But it's a fun article to read.

If there's anything that can be termed a freak in the innately strange and deformed world of Hollywood, it's the incredible two-headed director. There are the Zucker brothers, who, along with Jim Abrahams, hit the jackpot with Airplane! and The Naked Gun. There are Rob Allen and Bill Devlin, those wacky guys responsible for Goofus and Gallants The Movie. There are the infamous Dark Brothers, whose joyously s****y exploits have reinvigorated the adult film genre. And now there are Alex Winter and Tom Stern, two Tinseltown misfits who are determined to transform your neighborhood movie house into a shrinking, reeking, retch inducing chamber of human abnormalities with Hideous Mutant Freekz – the first traveling sideshow ever to roll out nationally on a single day.

The project marks their second directorial collaboration (their earlier and equally sick 16mm short, Squeal of Death, is a Film Threat Video title that debuted on the pair's now defunct MTV comedy show, The Idiot Box) and their first for a major studio (20th Century Fox). Surprisingly, deprivation – not depravity – is Alex and Tom's main reason for unleashing Freekz. For these twentysomething filmmakers, one of the worst aspects of being born during the 60s – besides missing out on the inexpensive drugs and the carefree sex– was not being able to experience a genuine freak show. Sure when some two-bit country fair set up in town, they might have been treated to a three-headed cow or a baby with a harelip floating in formaldehyde. But it wasn't ever a live show featuring real folks who could inspire such flatteries as, "Jesus Christ, there's something wrong with that guy!". "TV really killed the traveling freak show," laments Alex, relaxing with his codependent codirector on this balmy Southern California evening in a popular Venice c***khouse. "Why would people want to pay money to see freaks when they could just turn on the set and watch Gary Coleman? There's always a freak somewhere on TV." Tom, the taller and less photogenic of the two, agrees. "It's a shame, really because the freakshow was the oldest form of entertainment around. Back when there were cavemen, you can imagine everyone checking out the guy with three eyes. Freak shows were how these kinds of people made money. How else is someone with b***s the size of a Volkswagen gonna earn a living." "Yeah," says Alex. "We've always been interested in the exhibition of freaks.

There's something both tragic and funny about them. They're the ultimate in pathos." Okay, so Hideous Mutant Freekz isn't the first movie to spotlight the very physically challenged. But it is the first comedy, as far as we know that deals with this delicate subject. In these days of political correctness, it just isn’t acceptable to laugh at other people’s problems. “***** delicacy!”, barks Alex, “Cynical comedy is on the upswing – probably because this country is so far in the s***r. And what could be more cynical than laughing at someone else’s misfortune? That’s why we made the main character such an ***hole. The audience will enjoy seeing him get s*****ed over. The joke’s on him, not the freaks!”

The film’s antagonistic protagonist is Ricky Coogin (Alex Winter) a conceited p***k of an actor who’s become rich playing a character called Ghost Dude in a series of highly profitable films. Coogin’s greed catches up to him when a shifty big corporation called EES (Everything Except Shoes) offers him $ 5 million to travel about promoting a toxic, biogenetic South American fertilizer. After arriving in the country of Santa Flan, named after the patron saint of desserts, Coogin and his buddy Ernie (Micheal Stoyanov) stop off at a sideshow, where they are converted into freaks by the evil proprietor, Elijah C. Skuggs (Randy Quaid) and his nasty freak-making goop. To say more would be giving too much away, (and besides more words can’t do this d****ed film justice.) Although Freekz is truly bizarre, its c****tion was even stranger. The original script was to have starred the Butthole Surfers, one of Tom and Alex’s all-time favorite bands. Due to its sick and disgusting nature, however, no studio was interested in making it. “We couldn’t figure it out,” says Tom.

“We thought this was the most commercial idea ever put on paper. It’s hard to believe nobody wanted to see Gibby Haynes (head Butthole) j****g off into a red-hot s***t with his s***n spelling out the word S***n.” “The original intention,” explains Alex, “was to make the ultimate cult film that would rake all the elements that you’d see in a cult film and exaggerate them a hundred times. You know, The Hills Have Eyes kind of cult film – where the innocent family ends up in a horrible environment and they can’t get out of it and just get beat on from beginning to end.” Once producers Harry Ufland and Mary Jan Ufland (Not Without My Daughter, Night and the City) joined the show, Fox expressed an interest – but only after a major rewrite. “ Joe Roth, deserves a ****load of credit,”says Alex of the studio head, who subsequently departed for Disney. “It took a lot of b***s to go for this idea.” “They were right in thinking the script was a little too hard-core,” says Tom. “But once they got interested, we realized we wanted to do something that as a bit more horror/comedy as opposed to just a weird slasher film with lots of **** fluids.

Tim Burns, a Canadian writer with an actual sense of humor who Tom met when they both slaved on The Jim Henson Hour, was enlisted to help make the story more of a comedy. “I have to admit, I just didn’t get it.” says Burns. “So I basically ridiculed it just to get on those guys’ nerves. But for some reason, they liked the ideas I jokingly came up with and I ended up rewriting the script with them. Without this rewrite, Freekz would almost surely have been made as an underground film shot on Super 8 – maybe 16mm, if a little cash was raised. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with that. Yet Tom and Alex now have the opportunity to subvert many more impressionable young minds than they would have had otherwise. Making the script slightly less disgusting is a small price to pay, when you consider how many kids may now grow up warped. “Sure it’s a little more mainstream,” admits Tom, punching a c***khead who’s been gibbering at us for the past five minutes. “But we’re talking degrees here. It’s still fairly gross by most people’s standards – and a lot more clever than it was. Compared to most comedies, it’s not at all mainstream.” But selling out always has some drawbacks. One thing audiences will miss is the sight of he guitar player from the Butthole Surfers playing someone’s spinal cord as the innocent victim screams in pain. Oh, the heartbreak.

Freaks, needless to say, are integral to the film. At first, there weren’t enough very special people in the script. So Tim Burns set out to multiply the number of human oddities. “I really wanted to make the film more expensive,” he laughs. “And I figured more freaks would definitely drive up the budget.” While new mutants were added, others were discarded. “The Human Bong was a real favorite, says Tom wistfully. "His b**t acted as the carb while you smoked his mouth." "That of course, was the civilized version, " reminisces Alex, the sadness apparent in his voice. "We originally had the smoke coming out his *ss. But we thought that might be just a little too hard-core." "Some people might have called it bad taste," agrees Tom. Instead of a few completely unnatural oddities, there is now a healthy balance between the basic, old-time classic freaks and some that could only exist in the kind of nightmares you get after eating too many hash brownies at a Grateful Dead concert.

Take, for instance, Juan the Dog-Faced Boy. Dog Boys (sometimes known as Wolf Boys) were a common freak show attraction. Usually it was some poor kid who had the misfortune of having hair growing all over his face. Many times there was also some b*****t story about how the carnival had discovered the little tyke being nursed by coyotes. "Our Dog Boy is slightly different," says Tom. "Juan likes to do "dog things" – like chase after squirrels and lick his balls. All the things we wish we could do. "There is also that eternal crowd pleaser, the Bearded Lady. Imagine if Madonna's whiskers grew even more pronounced, and you'll get the picture. Moreover, this bearded lady is not a woman, but a man who got in touch with his feminine side after being exposed to Skugg's secret freak producing formula. "His act consists of giving fashion and beauty tips to the audience," says Alex. "It's really very beautiful."

Two of the stranger freaks are the Eternal Flame and Wormie, the Worm Man. The Eternal Flame started out as something similar to the Human Torch of The Fantastic Four. "The best way to describe him," explains Burns, "is just that he was a guy who erupted into flames without warning and stayed that way until someone put him out." When Burns jokingly suggested that the Eternal Flame be a guy, with fire spewing out his r****m, Tom and Alex – never ones to turn down a good f**t joke – took him seriously and worked the character into the script. Wormie, meanwhile is a freak lousily based on the real-life Caterpillar Man – a guy with no arms or legs who kind of wiggled his way around. His big s****k was rolling a cigarette and then smoking it. "We basically twisted the concept around a little bit," says Alex, pausing to pull a revolver and blow a pigeon off a nearby window sill. "Wormie is a guy who gets turned into a giant worm. He's sort of pathetic in that he's always begging people to wipe his ass for him.

Other freaks on parade include CowBoy, a guy with a cow's head and udders dangling from his belly; Rosie the Pinhead, a staple of any true freak show, Nosey a jerk whose nose is so big it takes up his entire head; Sock Head, basically a guy whose brain is encased in a sock instead of a skull; and Frog Man, a scuba diver who speaks French. The remainder of this cretinous crew is truly so bizarre, so outlandish, that they are not discussed by the writers. "Some of the stuff you just have to see to believe," says Tom "The effects are incredible!".

With a budget of somewhere between $10-15 million ($100 million if you count all the drugs quietly supplied to the set) one would expect the effects to be pretty damn good. “About 30% of the money went to Tom and me.” Alex cheerfully confides. “Whatever was left we kinda dished out to the effects guys.”

One of the make-up experts commissioned was the uniquely gifted Screaming Mad George. “He was the first guy to help us c*****ve of how to actually bring these freaks to life in a practical way,” says Alex. “He was with us since the very beginning, and when the script changed, we all worked together on these really weird characters.” The pair also promise some really cool claymation animatronics and “Tex Avery-style” computer graphics. “We’re very happy with the effects,” brags Tom, dodging a wayward bullet. “We were given enough money to actually do what we wanted effects-wise and still have enough left to support our debilitating, time-consuming cocaine habits.” The set, a luridly realistic sideshow from hell, is also pretty amazing. With such attractions as the Heavy Petting Zoo, where customers get to swap s**t with their favorite barnyard animal, and I’ll F**t Your Weight, featuring a guy who holds a megaphone to his b******s, then guesses your weight and f***s it out pound by pound, you’d think that the merchandising possibilities would be endless. “Mattel and Kenner were actually interested in doing some kind of toys,” claims Alex. “They came down to check out the set and thought it was pretty cool. They even molded some figurines based on a couple of the characters.” But then the unthinkable happened: They read the script! “After that, all interest kinda disappeared. This is definitely not a kid’s movie.” Too bad. Imagine Freekz action figures or Elijah C. Skuggs’s Instant Freek Goop to spread on your little brother’s face, or even Freekz Pez Dispensers. Nah, forget that last one. You’d have to be a real wh*re to sell out to a candy company.

With two idea-packed craniums, jockeying for position behind the camera, you’d think there would be some major fistfights. Not so with the Winter-Stern organism. “We’ve done it for so long that we don’t even think about it,” says Alex. “We do everything together right from the start. We write together, plan the shot list together, we even take turns with the casting couch. Basically the whole design of the film is a collaborative effort, so once we get shooting, there really aren’t any problems.” “We even yell at the same people together,” says Tom. “At one point, we ganged up and screamed at John Ritter so hard that he burst into tears. He was unable to complete his role as the hermaphroditic dwarf, so we had to write him out of the picture. No big loss, now that I think about it.” Yet Alex disputes reports that the pair are tyrants. “Sure we can be tough sometimes,” he says. “But we really do have big hearts and truly love everyone involved.” “Except for Dino, the thieving production assistant,” snarls Tom. “That a*****e quit our film to write for The Ben Stiller Show. And what’s the first thing he does? He creates a talking sock character! That s*********h!” “And don’t forget that propmaster!” reminds Alex. “Oh yeah, a word of advice for aspiring young filmmakers,” says Tom. “Always keep your eyes on the greedy, conniving propmaster. Companies pay them off to sneak their products into shots. Every time I looked through the lens, I’d see a Budweiser can in the middle of the frame. I’d swear it wasn’t there five seconds ago.” “The rotten b*****d,” grumbles Alex. Since word leaked from the super secret closed set Hollywood has been abuzz about the number of celebrities appearing in Freekz.

Unfortunately, many of the star cameos landed on the cutting room floor. (“Deservedly so,” sniffs Tom.) So forget about Schwarzenegger, Cruise, Madonna, Costner and the rest of those no-talent, spineless, overpaid, Premiere-posing hacks. Their “contributions” to Freekz will never be seen. Unless, of course , Tom and Alex someday release a high-priced director’s cut on laserdisc. “No way!” bellows Alex, throwing an empty beer bottle at a nearby mirror for emphasis. “We burned all the trims. And most of the people in ‘em – especially Bruce Willis and Robin Wright – should be grateful that we did. The good news, however is that plenty of stars did survive the final cut. Besides Randy Quaid, there’s William Sadler (Trespass, Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey) as the head creep of the evil EES corporation, Mr. T as the Bearded Lady, Megan Ward (Encino Man) as the feminist babe, Brooke Shields as a television show hostess, Larry “Bud” Melman as a dork and Keanu Reeves as Juan the Dog-Faced Boy. Wait a second – Keanu Reeves? “Keanu gets a bad rap,” says Alex. “He’s had the misfortune of being miscast a few times and everyone gets down on him. He’s actually very funny and has a great comedic sense that hasn’t ever been used to its full potential before now.

“It’s true ,” says Tom with a straight face. “People will be very surprised when they see how funny he is in Freekz.” “It sounds c*****ll to say this,” adds Alex, saying it anyway. “But we are very happy with the whole cast. Everyone was easy and fun to work with, I miss everybody.” “So do I,” weeps Tom. “So do I.” But there’s no time for tears. The duo are currently entertaining offers from all the major studios, and it won’t be easy for them to select just one. “We’re definitely going to do Freekz 2: Electric Boogaloo at some point,” swears Tom, brightening as he blows a h****r into a filthy hanky. “And everyone keeps bugging us to do the Eddie, the Flying Gimp From Outer Space movie. But our next directing assignment will be some Chuck Norris deodorant ads.” But first Winter may have to sweat out a third Bill & Ted movie – minus Ted. “Keanu was smart enough to get out of his contract, so this one just has Bill in it,” Alex explains. “This time, Bill and Rufus take the phone booth into Bill’s body to try and make him less of a f****n’ r****d. It’s called Bill’s Fantastically Bogus Voyage! On that note, we carefully pick our way through the c***khouse’s dazed occupants. After Tom stops to rifle the pocket of one comatose customer, we head out into the night vowing to recognize the inherent worth of every human being. Even if they do have an arm growing out of their forehead.
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Old 08-03-2004, 01:21 PM
Here's some pictures from the same article that was found on the same site.

I want my DVD and action figures!
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Old 08-03-2004, 06:34 PM
I used to love this movie when I was younger, but forgot about it. Those figures are great and Mr. T as the Bearded Lady is gold. I think this is the first time I've seen this movie discussed on the boards.
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Old 08-03-2004, 10:34 PM
It deserves so much more than mere discussion...though I am proud to be the first one to touch on the film on these boards (if indeed that is true, if not prove me wrong). Apparently Tom and Alex put up a petition to get the film on DVD.

If you like this movie and would love a DVD packed with features, I encourage you to sign it. I did.


Also, I think it would be awesome if Arrow reviewed this movie. He would be marked under "Legend" in my book if he did so.
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Old 08-04-2004, 01:22 PM
Originally posted by Mog
It deserves so much more than mere discussion...though I am proud to be the first one to touch on the film on these boards (if indeed that is true, if not prove me wrong). Apparently Tom and Alex put up a petition to get the film on DVD.

If you like this movie and would love a DVD packed with features, I encourage you to sign it. I did.


Also, I think it would be awesome if Arrow reviewed this movie. He would be marked under "Legend" in my book if he did so.
Yeah there a lot of films I want arrow to review like liquid sky, Dune, eraserhead, subconscious cruelty, salo, mordum....it'd all be interesting
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Old 08-04-2004, 08:36 PM

MOg- DUDE I HAVE THAT ARTICLE! It's originally from Film Threat !!
It was a cover story on the film. So there is a fansite for Mr. Winter? Fucking awesome. Bout time.

And I'm glad you found the figures. Yes, you should have them. I believe I bought Alex's character. Though I would have given my left nut if I had nuts for Derrick McGrath's character - I always had a thing for him. *sigh* Derrick....
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Old 08-06-2004, 04:07 PM
HOLY SHIT!! I used to love this movie! I mean I would watch all the time. I havent seen it in like 7 years.

I remember it being really weird and actually a little freaky. I really dont remember anytihng about it, except the sock puppet guy, played wondefully by Bobcat goldflait or how ever you spell his name. And the piece of shit that looks like Kim Basinger.

Oh man I miss this movie. I loved that worm guy too.
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Old 08-07-2004, 01:08 AM
I don't remeber the monster that is in the pic with the girl in the black shirt. . .
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Old 08-07-2004, 01:52 PM
Me neither. Maybe the picture is just showing off Mad George's previous work because I don't remember the giant fuckin' hand either.
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Old 08-09-2004, 12:20 AM
Yes those pics of Screaming Mad were from a previous movie. The Film Threat article was just showcasing some of his other work. If you can find a back issue of this mag, do it. It's a great piece on Alex . Was a great magazine.
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Old 08-16-2004, 09:47 PM
OMG i looooooooved this movie - they used to show it on hbo all the time. i'd love to see it again as it's been awhile. who can forget the giant rastafarian eyeballs with machine guns? keanu reeves as the dog boy? c'mon people, comic gold!!!
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Old 08-18-2004, 12:21 PM
The excessive cencorship makes that review a bit tough to read ("butt" seems to be cencored??) but pretty interesting regardless.

Among my favorite characters in any movie, EVER.

Wasn't one "freak" just a hammer that used to be a wrench?

Last edited by Scythemantis; 08-18-2004 at 12:25 PM..
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Old 04-23-2005, 01:52 PM

If you guys haven't checked out Arrow's DVD Buzz Saw, READ IT NOW! The two disc Freaked! DVD set is being released July 12th this year, loaded with features!

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Old 05-31-2012, 03:59 PM
some of those old scans are pretty neat. nonetheless, I decided to bump this one up just because of how absolutely kickass and fun this movie is. to this day it still is beyond ridiculously underappreciated... SO MUCH retro and awesome.
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Old 05-31-2012, 05:35 PM
Yup, the definitive cult classic imo. It's hilariously offbeat and wacky. Everybody I show this movie to reacts the same way: "what the FUCK are we watching?"

Most of 'em end up liking it though

Lucky for me my girlfriend loves it
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