Adam Wingard's Home Sick plays like a nihilistic acid-fueled parody of so many soapy homecoming flicks. You know — a buddy returns home to discover his friends still stuck in the same dead-end town, their dead-end lives stuck on an endless loop. In Home Sick, nobody's a lovable loser, they're all losers. And the homecoming party? It's a dud until a nameless psycho (none other than cult-fave Bill Mosely) appears wielding a suitcase full of razor blades. He takes one girl hostage and promises to leave, but only when each partygoer reveals the name of a person they hate.
Mr. Suitcase is a cutter of sorts too, and he slices himself each time a name's mentioned, which unleashes a demon-serial killer who mutilates those mentioned. Get it? Then the group's biggest dipshit jokes that he hates everyone in the room, and, well ... panic ensues for the five hapless friends, along with sex, drugs, eviscerations, disembowelments, eye-popping acting and the most disgusting chili dinner imaginable, served up by a redneck militiaman.
If Home Sick is a homecoming parody, then Sick Girl is a nauseating, brutal and unintentionally funny family drama about a girl named Izzy trying to care for her younger brother in the wake of her parent's death, while her older brother joins the military. Unable to cope with such loss, Izzy has taken to slaughtering folks, and she's particularly fond of those who pick on the weak.
Director-writer Eben McGarr attempts to craft a disturbing portrait of family dysfunction, but his flick doesn't explain Izzy's incestuous feelings for her bro nor her penchant for strangling nuns and then urinating on their lifeless bodies! Oh, well, family drama is family drama no matter how much exploitation you throw at it.
Home Sick and Sick Girl play exclusively at 8 p.m. on Thursday, April 8, at the Burton Theatre (3420 Cass Ave., Detroit, 313-473-9238; burtontheatre.com) as part of its weekly 42nd Street Drive-In Theater series on Thursdays.