Let me take you back to a movie I wrote about earlier this year and a moment within that movie I failed to mention back then, a moment that still has me scratching my head. The movie is Nick Millard’s Criminally Insane II, the 1/100th-the-budget SOV sequel to his minor cult classic Criminally Insane. The moment comes just over twenty-five minutes in.
Context: The movie takes place in a halfway house for recovering mental patients. The woman who runs the place has stepped out for some unaddressed reason and left a scummy young staff member in charge. In proving how much of a slimeball he is, this staff member serves canned dog food to the patients for dinner, then lies and tells them it’s corned beef hash.
Now, there are only three patients. What I hadn’t noticed my first or even second time through this affair is the guy prepares four plates of dog food. This brings an obvious question to mind: who was the last plate of dog food for, and who ate it?
Logic dictates the Beagle-like dog that appears in the background of (I think) two scenes. But there’s only one problem with this. The dog is never addressed, interacted with, or acknowledged in any way as existing. No one pets it or even looks at it.
In other words, the dog appears to have made the flick by sheer accident (or, more likely, out of unwillingness to re-shoot the scenes it walked in on). For this reason, I feel we can safely eliminate it from the equation. I also feel that if there were a storyline dog, the patients would have noticed its food looked and smelled exactly like theirs, and there would have been some kind of kerfuffle.
Focus then shifts to the scumbag. He was, after all, the only other person around at the time. But if he’s the culprit, this begs another obvious question: why would he serve himself dog food? Certainly not for the taste, I would hope. I admit to having tried dog kibble several times in the past out of sheer curiosity before I went vegetarian, and every time I did, it was terrible. Like asshole meat cut with sawdust (err, what I imagine that combo would taste like). I feel bad even giving it to my own dog, and he grew up in a crack house where he probably wasn’t fed very often at all.
As much as I want them to, neither possibility — the dog or the scumbag — adds up for me. This leaves me wondering: was the whole thing a production goof? To get to the bottom of this, I decided to head to the source and
harass ask Nick Millard himself with a phony Facebook profile I slapped together specifically for this purpose.
Sadly, he never responded. I assume he was either put off by the not-at-all-real-sounding name or was too busy re-posting his own posts (he does this) in all-caps stream of consciousness like a true old guy. As hard as it is to believe, I must now come to grips with the fact that I’ll probably never know the answer to the very important question of who ate the fourth plate of dog food in Criminally Insane II. B-movie watchers like myself will just have to keep wondering. The mystery lives on. And maybe that’s not such a bad thing.
So, have you seen this? Do you have a theory, or am I making mountains out of mole hills?
UPDATE (8/31/16) — Nick Millard writes:
THERE IS THE GUY FROM KAFKA’S METAMORPHOSIS, GREGOR SAMSA, WHO THINKS THAT HE IS A ROACH… THERE IS ALBERT, A MAINSTAY IN IRMI FILMS… ALBERT ESKINAZI. HE COULD USE A LITTLE FAN SUPPORT AT THE MOMENT… THERE IS OF COURSE OUR BIGGEST STAR ON THE IRMI FILMS LOT… PRISCILLA ALDEN… AND A SMALLER ROLE… A MYSTERY ROLE… BEST, NICK
His cryptic reply doesn’t answer my question. What it does answer is why patient Greg eats dead flies and walks his hands up and down the air like he’s playing an invisible piano. Greg was apparently based upon Franz Kafka’s character from The Metamorphosis, who woke up one day as an insect-like creature. The “Irmi Films” Nick refers to is the production company he and his wife run.