I felt a little ripped-off after I sat through “Street Trash”, to be perfectly honest. I picked up the DVD with the expectation of seeing hobos dissolve themselves with sulfuric acid for an hour and a half. What I got was a movie about hobos waging turf wars with other hobos, a thin detective subplot, some random stuff with a mob boss and vague social commentary about homeless Vietnam War veterans turning to alcohol. Still, when the movie does feature vagrants chugging highly corrosive liquor and melting into puddles of neon goop…holy crap.
Fred (Mike Lackey) and his younger brother Kevin (Marc Sferrazza) are just a couple of homeless guys living in a junkyard. At a local liquor store, the manager uncovers a case of Viper, an ancient-looking alcoholic beverage he’s never heard of but figures he can make a buck on by selling it at bargain bin prices. Little does he know, Viper causes whoever drinks it to instantaneously melt into a puddle of brightly colored slime. Meanwhile, Fred and Kevin find themselves on the bad side of the lunatic Vietnam vet, Bronson (Vic Noto), who rules the junkyard and wants them dead. And while all this is going on, a douchebag cop is out to stop a mobster named Nick Duran (Tony Darrow) from doing evil mobster stuff.
“Street Trash” is a horror comedy that carries on the spirit of a Troma film, but with fractionally superior acting. It’s shamelessly stupid, but that’s what makes it a lot of fun. Hell, the ending song features a guy singing about how much being dissolved by Viper hurts. Can’t go wrong with that.
Unfortunately, “Street Trash” lacks focus. As funny as the Nick Duran subplot was, it was entirely pointless, unnecessary and feels like little more than a waste of your time. The Viper is what is advertised so prominently about the movie and yet it is completely absent from the bulk of the film’s middle section, to the point where you’re left wondering if it’s ever going to resurface again. The real plot of the movie is Fred and Kevin taking on Bronson, the gigantic killer hobo who wants their blood for some reason. The Viper plays a small part in the film’s conclusion but is mostly useless.
Still, as unfocused as “Street Trash” is, at the very least it’s funny. Low-brow funny, sure, but funny never-the-less. It is extremely crass and tries its best to offend all sensibilities wherever possible. And as someone so desensitized to the Universe that I haven’t had a film “offend” me since grade school, I enjoyed it.
“Street Trash” feels like a movie that wanted to tell a different story but decided to throw in a pointless subplot about flesh-eating liquor for no good reason. If you can get past the fact that the film’s main draw is practically a non-entity, you may like it. If you like intentionally bad horror films, anyway.