Artsploitation Films is a movie company to keep an eye on. Not only do they make instant classics like Wither (my blog here), they also don’t shy away from blatant gay themes in horror films such as Der Samurai (my blog here).
Then there’s Bloody Knuckles, which is an honorary gay horror comedy. And it’s pretty impossible not to be reminded of the horror comedy Idle Hands when you watch it, which is a good thing.
Travis, a cute and controversial comic artist responsible for extremely obscene and offensive material, has found major fandom with the gay community because of one particular comic featuring a leather man vigilante. But he makes an enemy when he creates a comic mocking an Asian crime lord in Chinatown. To teach Travis a lesson, the crime lord cuts off his drawing hand, and it’s a gory mess.
Due to a toxic product the crime lord was pushing, Travis’s hand comes back from the grave (a garbage bin in an alley) and starts harassing Travis, insisting he get revenge. The hand even goes as far as sticking its finger in several of Travis’s orifices while he’s sleeping, with comic results.
Gay humor abounds. There’s also a gay couple—a daddy and a pretty boy—that is being harassed by the crime ring. And they’re getting little help from a homophobic detective. So when Travis’s hand and the daddy—who is obsessed with Travis’s gay anti-hero—meet at a leather club, revenge is top priority! There’s nothing ambiguous about this gay duo.
Interestingly, for a movie about an over-the-top comic artist, Bloody Knuckles is pretty tame with the gross out humor, which actually works in its favor because it keeps it from becoming too much of a farce.
My one wish is that the leather bar scene had come sooner. A majority of the movie focuses on Travis coping with the loss of his hand and its return, as well as the subject of censorship, but all the true grindhouse gore and campy comedy come in when the leather daddy and the hand team up for revenge on the crime lord and his henchmen.
Talk about an iconic horror killer. The daddy in particular is not only sexy, but totally upstages the hand in the humor department as well! However, their reign is way too short! Here’s hoping there’s a sequel and that it’s all about the vigilante leather daddy killer.