The Brice Kennedy Show
- Straight to Video
- Director: Brice Kennedy
- Written by: Brice Kennedy
- Running Time: 60 minutes
- Language: English
- MPAA Rating:
- Cast: Brice Kennedy, Danny Cameron, Jaymee Pro, Mark Polonia, John Polonia, Jon McBride, Todd Carpenter, Courtney Polonia, Jeff Dylan Graham (clip), Mia Amber Davis (clip), Kimberlee A. Gibson (clip)
THE BRICE KENNEDY SHOW
More than a dozen years ago, after graduating from high school, I spent some time in Ottawa, Canada working a crappy government job, saving up to go to college. Growing up in small town Trenton, Ontario I was overwhelmed by the sheer number of tv channels to choose from. Typically we had about 13 to pick from, and now in this new home away from home I was confronted by a 100+ clicks. Interestingly, it was a cheap off-the-cuff cable access program that my friends most raved about, and informed me that I "just had to watch!" The show, titled after its host, Tom Green, was basically a hodge-podge of random man-on-the-street interviews, pranks, musical numbers and the occasional in-set interviews. It was hilarious and addictive.
Unless you've been living under a rock, you'll know that Tom Green eventually left Canada for the US. There he would go on to major fame cranking out a similar, bigger-budgeted talk show for MTV, appearing in a couple of Hollywood blockbusters (and a few duds, namely "Legacy", "Shred" and "Freezer Burn: The Invasion of Laxdale"), and even taking time out to marry (and later divorce) Drew Barrymore.
One other thing Tom Green would do is make a life long fan of one West Virginia-born Brice Kennedy. And like his idol, Brice Kennedy, a b-movie actor and star of nearly a dozen straight-to-video movies, would go on to produce his own self-titled cable access program, The Brice Kennedy Show.
Over a two year span, Kennedy would crank out a half dozen half hour episodes. While the budget was tiny, the enthusiasm was heaped on in Everest-sized portions. In 2006, Jon McBride, legendary director of the cult classic "Cannibal Campout", sent me a copy of The Brice Kennedy Show. He was curious what I thought of it, probably because he was one of the featured guests.
Upon screening the DVD, I was immediately struck by how much it reminded me of "Jack Ass", "CKY" and all the other extreme reality stunt/prank shows that were all the rage at the time. I felt compelled to fire off an e-mail to Kennedy, telling him what I thought of his show, and how much it reminded me of "Jack Ass". His reply was quite simple, and stated: "Less Jack Ass, more like Tom Green." And there it was. Memories of Green's impoverished cable access show suddenly flooded my memory. It was so obvious. Indeed, that's what it reminded me of most of all. With that in mind, I couldn't wait to dive back in with this new and enhanced perspective.
For what it is, The Brice Kennedy Show is a fantastic, fast-paced, quirky, zanily pieced-together homage to the old Tom Green Show, only done on, from what I gather, an even more miniscule budget. Kennedy's show, like Tom's old show, was driven entirely by guts, editing, and a healthy serving of sharp wit and giddy comedic genius, with the occasional foray into pure and utter puerility.
Fans of b-movies, the ones most likely to drop dime on The Brice Kennedy Show DVD, will probably find much to love about Episode 3, specifically. Titled "The B-Movie Special", this episode opens with Brice stumbling into a fast food restaurant, video camera in hand, and taking stock of a the guy wearing a Michael Myers mask in the parking lot as viewed through the over-the-counter monitor. After scaring the staff, he is summarily shown the door by an angry manager. Later, in a post credit scroll we are informed that this is "a celebration of independent cinema, b-movies, short films and filmmakers everywhere," adding, "...a very idiotic celebration."
And that pretty much sums it up. Brice and crew are out to have a great time and nothing more. Jaymee Pro, Brice's effervescent student co-host, attempts to add commentary via satellite (one with a curious delay), typically stepping over Brice's chatter with her own bizarre ill-timed observations and laughter. Not sure why she's there really, but that is probably the point.
In between segments involving hair dryers, reading "people who e-mail me" e-mails, "philosophy" lessons from mumble-mouthed actor Todd Carpenter and deciphering exactly who spilled the milk, Brice also drags out some semi-celebrities to interview. Two of Brice's guests include legendary b-movie filmmakers Mark Polonia and his brother John. John passed away in 2008, and this show is fitting tribute to his memory, as it shows him as a wonderfully funny man with a vibrant personality. I loved this.
I also enjoyed immensely watching Mark and John as they reflect on (and meditate over) their lengthy filmography. Brice, who had appeared in a bunch of the Polonia's films, was quick to ask why he was killed off only 8 minutes into "Blood Red Planet", his first time working for them. Hilariously, he answers his own question. "I sucked!" he announces. Numerous other Poloinia Brother film clips are featured, including "Feeders", "Hellgate: House That Screamed 2", "Peter Rottentail" and the never released "Gorilla Warfare: Battle of The Apes" with the Brothers and Kennedy adding commentary. Afterwards, Kennedy asks the Brothers their feelings about their many detractors out there on the internet. "People hate us because we're geniuses," Mark says, his tongue planted firmly in his cheek. John's response, in keeping with his character, is both sober and positive. "People don't like it, they don't like it. We can't make them like our stuff," he says. Brice, with a bullhorn in hand, is less kind. "You suck and we hate you," he tells the hecklers, blowing out Mark and John's eardrums in the process.
Brice also finds time to drag out long time Polonia Brothers collaborator, Jon McBride, who happily sings "If" the gloomy theme to his cult-hit "Cannibal Campout". Later Kennedy relinquishes his hosting duties to McBride who quickly realizes he's out of his element and scurries off to the green room.
Other highlights include Brice commenting on Hollywood's propensity for wasting 200 million dollars on complete and utter garbage. Of course, what starts out as a few quick jabs at the industry quickly amps up as Kennedy demolishes a videotape - a symbolic representation of Hollywood excess - with a sledge-hammer. As like everything else in this DVD, subtlety is not Brice's strong suit. I found this segment to be absolutely hilarious, especially the re-emergence of Jon McBride who serenades the destruction.
Coming full circle, at least for Brice, I'm sure, is the time that he and Mia Amber Davis worked together in the 2002 film "Holla If I Kill You." Mia had worked previously on the Tom Green vehicle "Road Trip" and it's pretty clear the reverence this experience holds for Brice, as he elects to serve up the clip with its own segment block.
Overall, The Brice Kennedy Show would make a great addition to any cult movie collector's library, if only for the fact that it offers an interesting look into three of the most prolific b-movie filmmakers out there and how they feel about the films they've made. Kennedy's own ruptured psyche is explored in all of its chaotic kookiness and that's definitely good for a laugh or two. Oh, and he's a pretty good host to boot when he's not going completely over-the-top. A curiousity and a b-movie fan must-have, for sure.