Basket Case (1982) - Frank Henenlotter

This is where grindhouse and independent horror get really fun. The eighties is considered by many to be the greatest era in horror cinema. It had thousands of films released with some really interesting and original content. From charming independent movies to garbage schlock. You definitely had a full helping of horror in the nineteen eighties. Now, Basket Case is a raw and murky film from Frank Henenlotter, It's cheap and campy. Weird and funny. Definitely a solid case to make number nineteen of the 31 Movies of Halloween. 

A young man that was once a conjoined siamese twin, carries around his disembodied brother in a basket. They are visiting New York on a mission to murder the people that were responsible for separating them. They pay visits to all of the "doctors" that had performed the operation years earlier. The deformed brother, Bilal is let out of his basket to wreak his havoc on these no-gooders.And he does with gory results. 

Basket Case isn't a serious film. It reminds me of those old Head Detective sketches from In Living Color. It's not a bad movie, well... no. It is a really bad movie. But, it has that eighties low-budget campy charm. This is a cult film so show it to who you want carefully. Although it appears cheap and ultra low-budget. This movie can still come off as offensive and disturbing to some. To me it was just a laugh fest. The gore was a nice addition, but wasn't done very well. Let's just say that the effects left a lot to be desired. I still appreciated it though.

Teens and young adults would really love this movie. It's just funny enough for them to get without being extremely terrifying. It's a good one to put on at parties too. I liked it. I thought that the movie flowed really well and it actually pulled off some complicated shots. The stop-motion shots were the worst, but they didn't drag the movie down too far. I am looking forward to seeing where this world goes. Basket Case 2 and 3 are definitely on my short list. 


Frank Henenlotter


Edgar Ievins


Frank Henenlotter


Kevin Van Hentenryck, Terri Susan Smith and Beverly Bonner


Analysis Film Releasing Corporation

Release date: 

April 7, 1982


United States

Did ya know: 

Most of the credits that appear at the end of the film are fake. The crew was very small and rather than repeat the same names over and over again they decided to just make up names.