The Merits of Sin: The Porn Murders aka Blue Murder (1985) (Canada)

There’s a clown masked psychopath doing away with Toronto pornographers. Producers, porn stars and prostitutes are turning up dead and a few folks are taking notice. There’s Mr. Blake, a beer guzzling reporter who the killer calls and makes some demands of. He wants the porno theaters shut down and the filthy smut off the streets or Blake may turn up just as dead as the smut peddlers.

Blake on the case

There’s a wise-ass homicide lieutenant who wants his reporter buddy to butt out of his investigation and not only because he happens to enjoy the company of the man but because he may also be just a little dirty. There’s a rich man named Mr. Vespi who has a lot of money sunk into the industry and is nothing but a glorified thug. He’s at war with another rich prick named Mr. Markham. Markham lost his stripper wife to Vespi and is teaming up with the psychopath to ruin Vespi’s plans at “legitimate” adult film production but as is the case with most devil’s bargains: things may be slipping out of control.

Sing a song for the porno murders

There’s also a priest, Markham’s daughter, her slightly psychopathic ex husband, Vespi’s loyal number one man and a few other weirdos haunting the dark corners of the film. The simple plot is needlessly complicated with subplots and backstabbing. It’s like a choose your own adventure book where the outcome of every choice is probably herpes.

An itchy ending

Poorly dubbed musical performances, bar talk about mustaches and the same vibe a weakly lit truck-stop bathroom gives off works at pinpointing a special time and place that can never be recreated. The sleaze is there, it’s just hiding under the stained tiles.

Truck stop 10

Everything is in place for an extremely boring time. Endless dialogue between an abundance of characters, censorship restraints thanks to it being a television presentation and some lame villains who land on the opposite side of threatening. And if this was an American production, it probably would have fulfilled the level of forgetful it promises, but this bad boy is Canadian and holy hell is it a blast. The infinite dialogue is dealt out by actors who don’t come off as bad, they just come off as visitors from some parallel dimension where almost everything is the same but maybe it’s just a little kinder. A place where a chat between a crime reporter and a homicide lieutenant doesn’t take place down at headquarters. No, it takes place in a bathroom where our high ranking detective is taking a bubble bath while our journalist with a linebacker build is sitting on the toilet enjoying a can Coors. Sure the violence and sex the film demands is cut back but somehow it just makes it feel sleazier. Like what we do get to see we shouldn’t have been allowed to. A peak behind the locked door of a wood paneled basement where something nauseating is happening. The villains mix a level of stuffy politeness into their threats. They’re violent scumbags but they’re almost lazy about it. This film is something else. In a neon lit nightmarescape of pornographic horror it’s the cozy corduroy that’s just dark enough to hide the beer stains…at least I hope that’s beer. 9/10

If you want to check it out yourself (and you do) get it here… http://www.cauldron.club/collections/192677-all-products/products/25341246-blue-murder-dvd


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