Psycho Cop (1989)

PsychoCopCoverMovies like Psycho Cop depend on their villains being super cool instruments of death, dismemberment, and destruction! They need to look like a bad ass, they need to demonstrate cunning and power, and while they don’t necessarily need to speak, when they do, they need to be able to deliver those vicious one-liners with convincing bile.

Here, we have a fat guy in a cop suit who moves like his night stick is rammed up his ass, insists on wearing a goofy expression that calls to mind a simpleton whose biggest concern is where his candy bar went, and gives us the lamest and most predictable cop talk imaginable. You don’t even have to see the movie to imagine him stumbling around and babbling about the right to remain silent while killing a guy. And that was his best effort!

To be completely fair to Psycho Cop, it telegraphs it’s rampant nitwittedness as soon as it starts, giving the wimpy folks in the audience ample time to bail out before they get totally sucked in by the suckiness.

As soon as we lay eyes and ears on him, it becomes clear that Psycho Cop is really just Pudgy Cop who seems to believe that his evilness necessitates a deep robotic voice punctuated by a maniacal laugh. It doesn’t convey what a psycho he is so much as leaves you with the feeling that he’s doing a bad impression of what he thinks a psycho’s laugh would sound like.

Psycho Cop though is a product of his environment so the stupidverse that he inhabits is also populated by six morons he spends most of the movie stalking for no real reason. I never could remember who was who, but the group broke down like this: three guys and three girls with one guy and girl instantly asserting that someone was trying to get them while the other four refused to believe it even when all the signs pointed to Psycho Cop hanging around in the woods.

Signs like stolen beer, a missing hairbrush and purse, and even the mess in the kitchen caused by some unattended soup! My God! The soup! Someone let the frigging soup boil over! We have to get back to town before we’re all slaughtered!

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As you no doubt have already surmised, these six people are systematically split up so that Psycho Cop can kill most of them without any else knowing. While I’m not of those sick freaks with a fetish for expertly staged kills in these sorts of movies, I at least expect that they will make a little sense.

One of the chicks gets herself run over by Psycho Cop’s patrol car which while not exactly prime supervillain material, could conceivably happen in real life. Except that Psycho Cop was driving his car through the woods!

This dumb woman stands around looking at the car coming at her and when she finally decides to run, does she hide behind a tree? Does she zig and zag or make a left turn or double back so that the car can’t maneuver sufficiently to run her over? No! She just runs straight ahead which allows Psycho Cop’s car to plow over her!

Normally, something like that would have little trouble being the dopiest death in a movie, but Psycho Cop is as thoroughly rotten as its title character’s brain surely is, so it would be Psycho Cop himself that suffers the most embarrassing death.

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Psycho Cop is still trying to kill the remaining two dolts and the surviving guy picks up a tree limb and throws it spear-like clear through Psycho Cop! Even though this guy was sitting on the ground and was about six feet away from Psycho Cop! And just moments before, this guy fell out of his car, complaining that his ribs hurt! Yet he could heave a log straight through a fat guy!

Psycho Cop is also one of those bad movies that manages to be bad when it’s not even necessary! There’s plenty of times where Psycho Cop’s back story is given through lazy shortcuts such as convenient radio news updates (police man Joe Vickers is missing!, a woman was found with evidence of Satanism at the scene!) and the appearance of some other cops who explain all about what they dug up on Psycho Cop’s past despite him only being missing for a day!

But the movie even explains stuff that didn’t need explaining! A cop says that Psycho Cop was the only cop who lived alone and took his patrol car home which is why they didn’t know he was missing! Except that when he didn’t show up to work they went and searched his apartment! So they knew he was missing as soon as he ditched work! Just like anyone else on the force!

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Then there’s the babble about how fingerprints revealed he was really a escaped mental patient! Wouldn’t the police run a background check when these guys apply for a job or go through the police academy? Then the radio says that he wasn’t really just an escaped mental patient, but was most likely a notorious serial killer! Isn’t being an escaped Satanist mental patient enough?

The scariest moment in the movie though comes at the end when Psycho Cop opens his eyes while still impaled on the stick, thereby threatening us with his most fiendish action yet: Psycho Cop Returns!

© 2013 MonsterHunter

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