LUNCH LADIES **** USA 2018 Dir: J.M. Logan 19 min
A stylish, spirited short homage to the work of John Waters, Herschel Gordon Lewis and Troma, with full-tilt performances from Donna Pieroni and Mary Manofsky as a pair of downtrodden dinner ladies miffed at catering for an endless succession of entitled, rude high-schoolers.
While the Principal threatens to replace them with vending machines, they set out on a mission to attend a concert by their idol, Johnny Depp, which naturally involves slaughtering cheerleaders and serving them up as lunch. Created by Clarissa Jacobson and directed by J.M. Logan, LUNCH LADIES features acting pitched at the right abrasive level, and the technically polished movie captures the look of certain latter-day Waters pictures as the plot briskly ventures down a splashy path of dismemberment, meat grinders and SWEENEY TODD-inspired cannibalism. There’s even a janitor whose catchphrase is (naturally) “Damn kids!” A feature-length expansion sustaining the same energy would be welcome.
Review by Steven West