6.7/10
8,051
53 user 104 critic

Brain Damage (1988)

One morning, a young man wakes to find that a small, disgusting creature has attached itself to the base of his brain stem. The creature gives him a euphoric state of happiness but demands human victims in return.

Director:

Frank Henenlotter
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Rick Hearst ... Brian (as Rick Herbst)
Gordon MacDonald Gordon MacDonald ... Mike
Jennifer Lowry ... Barbara
Theo Barnes ... Morris
Lucille Saint-Peter ... Martha
Vicki Darnell ... Blonde in Hell
Joseph Gonzalez ... Guy in shower (as Joe Gonzales)
Bradlee Rhodes ... Night watchman
Michael Bishop ... Toilet victim
Beverly Bonner ... Neighbor
Ari M. Roussimoff Ari M. Roussimoff ... Biker (as Ari Roussimoff)
Michael Rubenstein Michael Rubenstein ... Bum in alley
Angel Figueroa Angel Figueroa ... Junkie
John Reichert John Reichert ... Policeman
Don Henenlotter Don Henenlotter ... Policeman
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Storyline

A normal, average guy who lives in New York City becomes dependent on an evil, disembodied brain. The brain feeds the guy a narcotic substance in exchange for his unwilling assistance in obtaining the brains of innocent victims for sustenance. This turns into a tour of circa-1980s underground NYC clubs, backlots, and other seedy locations. One scene features the band Swimming Pool Cues playing the song "Corruption." Written by Mark Logan <marklo@west.sun.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

...Now You're Really Losing Your Mind! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Horror

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 May 1988 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Brain Damage (La maledizione di Elmer) See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA

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Box Office

Budget:

$900,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Palisades Partners See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (uncut)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

As Brian wakes up for the first time in his bed, his head covered in blood, an album poster is spotted on the wall, Slayer's "Reign In Blood". See more »

Goofs

In the scene where Brian confronts Mark and Barbara after they've had sex, he is looking in the wrong direction See more »

Quotes

Aylmer: [to Brian] Why, Brian! Hello! How are ya? How ya doin?
Brian: [Weakly] Help me... please, help me.
Aylmer: Why, of course I'll help ya, Brian! You and me are pals. I'll be happy to help you... But you'll have to feed me first.
See more »

Crazy Credits

In the end titles, listed under "Historical Research" is BABE WOZENTHAL. According Frank Henenlotter on the DVD's commentary, this was a joke about Jerry Lewis in "The Errand Boy." See more »

Alternate Versions

The unrated director's cut has been released on DVD. See more »

Connections

Featured in WatchMojo: Top 10 Lesser-Known Movie Monsters (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

Corruption
by J. Calder, A. Boston, J.E. Garnett, B. Elsey, & B. Burton
Performed by The Swimming Pool Q's
Courtesy of Irving Music, Inc.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Feed your head.
10 May 2016 | by pzivojinovicSee all my reviews

Are you tired of the sameness of Hollywood's over-priced commercialized dross? Check out Mr. Henenlotter's work today. This is a weird film, but in a good way. Elmer is a parasite who will get you high in exchange for brains. The problem was the old people was feeding him animals brain, so Elmer decide to find a new host. The young man was getting so high that he didn't know what Elmer was up to. Elmer didn't care just as he was getting human brains.

The film is also a moral warning about the effects of drugs - they make you feel great at first but before long you're addicted to them, you've screwed your life up and you'll do literally anything to get the fluids you're now dependent on. A very black form of comedy with a serious edge to it, and the inner-city locations provide an excellent atmosphere. Very original, with good writing, and neat visuals for such a low budget.

Overall rating: 7 out of 10.


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