The Manitou

This week, we discovered our new favorite movie. Not because it’s good, and not even because it’s bad. The Manitou falls into that rare space in-between, where it’s so well-done and sincerely committed to its wack-a-doodle premise from start to finish that we giddily enjoyed every bizarre, jaw-dropping moment. Where was this Tony Curtis flick all our lives? Why had we not heard of it before? Enjoy your introduction, loyal listeners, and PLEASE let us know your thoughts as well!

The Manitou
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The Manitou (1978)

Episode 341, 2 Guys and a Chainsaw

Todd: Hello and welcome to another episode of Two Guys and a Chainsaw. I’m Todd.

Craig: And I’m Craig.

Todd: Oh, Craig. Craig. Craig. Craig. What did we just watch?

Craig: I don’t know, but I hope you have all day because that’s how long I want to talk about it. 

Todd: We could talk about it forever. Oh my word. Okay. So I don’t even know, I’m just gonna jump into this.

Yeah. Uh, Craig chose the 1978 American supernatural body horror film, The Manitou Starring of all people, Tony Curtis, and Susan Strasberg. I’ve never seen this before. I feel like I’ve heard of it. I feel like it’s on some lists, but it wasn’t really on my radar. So, no, it’s my first time seeing it and I’m glad I did.

Mm-hmm. What about you, Craig? Uh, why did you choose this for this week? 

Craig: I don’t know. This isn’t the type of movie I usually watch, but I was looking for something to watch just for myself, and I went to Shutter and I was just scrolling through like. What’s new? And this popped up and I had never heard of it before.

I am almost positive. I’ve had no idea that this movie existed. So I clicked on it and I read the blurb, which was really short, but kind of intriguing. So I went to, I scrolled down to the, uh, viewer reviews. And I really usually like the viewer reviews on shutter because they’re brief and they don’t usually spoil things like people are polite and don’t spoil things, but people were like, Watch this movie.

Todd: Just do it and thank you later.

Craig: It was, uh, it, it was wild. 

Todd: You know, I don’t think we’ve, I don’t wanna say we haven’t seen a movie like this. We’ve seen some pretty wild stuff in the last few years of doing this, but nothing quite like this. This is really out there. I would almost liken it a little bit to altered states. Have you seen Altered States?

Uh, I don. It’s a starts out kind of sci-fi and um, really intriguing, and then it goes into just whackadoodle, campy territory. And you’re like, what movie did this become? But with Altered States, it’s just supposed to be a trippy movie. Anyway, this movie seems like it’s taking itself seriously. Mm-hmm. But then it plays like a parody almost.

Like, so much of it is unbelievable. I just watch the movie before we talk about it. Yeah. Oh, 

Craig: oh. Don’t, don’t listen to this first. Watch it because it’s so much better. I only kind of knew, vaguely, vaguely what it was about, and I wish that I hadn’t even known that. Just, just trust us. Turn it off. Watch it come back.

All right. Welcome back. 

Todd: Welcome back friends. 

Craig: I see what you’re saying because it’s just, Weird, but it doesn’t feel like parody, I guess, because they are taking it seriously. I don’t know. The movie is just so bizarre. Like it’s bizarre tonally. At first I thought that I was kind of maybe watching like a 1930s.

Farce, like mm-hmm. Like I, Tony Curtis in the beginning, and there’s so much story. I took 400 pages of notes on this movie because 

Todd: I gave up. I just, I went, I went to the Wikipedia. I went to the Wikipedia page, and I realized that the plot summary of this is like two pages long. So I’m like, okay, I’m just gonna refer to that while we talk because oh my God, the story goes all over the 

Craig: place and it’s crazy.

And it jumps right into it, and it just keeps going. But it’s like, it’s weird tonally. So the, the, the first thing that we, we meet this woman named Karen, who appears to be. The protagonist of the movie, and she’s going to the doctor because she has this new tumor on her neck that just appeared a few days ago, but it’s getting big and he like checks it out and she says, just casually, well, it, it kind of moves, sometimes it, it almost shifts as if.

Well, it’s as if someone were trying to turn over and get comfortable in bed. How often does that happen? Maybe four or five times a day. 

Todd: Okay. Doctor’s like, uh, alright, whatever. They’re, and 

Craig: they’re looking, they’re looking at the x-rays and they’re like, looks an awful lot like a fetus. Huh? Like, that’s weird.

Okay. New character. Then we move to, Harry played by Tony Curtis, and again, I guess just Tony Curtis’s popularity was waning because he was getting older, so he wasn’t getting as much work. That’s the only reason I can imagine. Can imagine why he was doing this movie. He 

Todd: is doing his best, by the way, in this movie.

I mean, he is really just, he is the straight man to all the nonsense that is happening around us, and he’s kind of the 

Craig: straight. Oh my gosh. Like I if he’s the straight man. Seriously. He is a fake mustachioed psychic who gives tarot readings to rich old ladies. Right. And he wears a cape Yes. And a fake mustache, and he dances for them.

Mm-hmm. Uh 

Todd: oh. That’s silly. I, 

Craig: I was like, what? It is silly. I, but I didn’t understand. I’m like, what movie is this? Is it a comedy? Right? I’m fine with it if it’s a comedy. I just didn’t know it was going to be, but then it’s really not like, no, I’m gonna talk about this movie. Like, I’m criticizing it. I’m not.

I loved it. Like I loved it, loved it. Like I was a little concerned for the first. Uh, third, maybe even almost up to half. But once it got to the seance, In this, like this is my kind of movie. 

Todd: I was so in. Hey hun. Oh my God, what is going on here? Oh my word. This is nuts. God, I, you know, like he’s, he is a psychic, fake psychic.

It makes no difference to the plot of the movie at all. 

Craig: No, it doesn’t make any difference. It’s just character building, I guess. But like he’s a fake psychic, except. I guess now his tarot readings are actually working. Mm-hmm. Well, it’s because it turns out he and Karen used to date and she calls them, it’s like, I know it’s been a long time, but I really need you.

And he’s like, okay. So they go to China. And walk around the gardens for a while, but they immediately are back together. 

Todd: Fall back in love, 

Craig: I guess. Yeah. This very night they end up back at his house, I guess, in bathrobes. Like just the lounging around in 

Todd: bathrobes as you used to do in the, you know, 1978, I guess.

And while she’s sleeping, she’s uttering some phrase, it’s pna. Oh, even the phrase is stupid. Pna witchy, solitude. It sounds this witch in it. Oh God.

Oh God, which upsets him a bit. Uh, this becomes, this becomes a major point of the movie, is that he just needs to know what this means and why she was saying it. Uhhuh and he investigates all over the years. He 

Craig: asks everybody he runs into on the street if they know what that means, 

Todd: p which she salva. And the funny thing is, as half the people that he says it to turn around and go wait a.

What did you just say? As though it’s meaningful to them, but they’re too afraid to tell him why. Oh, it’s it. 

Craig: So it’s becomes the story of this couple just attending to her medical needs for a while. Right. But it just so happens that it is, Like a freaking fetus in there. Like, and, and when the, when they are gonna try to cut it out and there’s like a cer like, you know, we’re, we’re witnessing the surgery and when the doctor goes to cut it, she opens her eyes chance, and the doctor like, is psychically forced.

To cut himself Uhhuh. Okay folks, this is when things start getting weird like that. Everything that we’ve talked about so far, that is nothing. That is a day in the park. This is where things start getting weird. Yes. When he, when when the guy gives a tarot 

Todd: reading Yes to Mrs. Hertz. Oh my 

Craig: God, I don’t even 

Todd: know what’s happening.

This old lady, Mrs. Hertz comes in and I sh I, I was like, okay, well this is, she’s the comic relief or something. Cuz she’s this kind of like silly, flustered old lady who sits down, won’t even sit at the table with him, just sits in a, in a chair in the other room while he reads the cards to her and he’s doing the reading.

And I guess it’s. Kind of bad it has, like, cuz I think of, obviously, you know, with these, with these psychics and things like that, they’re always telling you things that make you feel good. And so, right, he’s pulling up these cards and he’s trying to make ’em her feel good like he normally does. And he’s really overdoing it, but it keeps coming up bad.

So he’s like, oh, lemme just do that again. Oh, lemme just do that again. And as she’s watching, suddenly her face just kind of goes w bug-eyed. Her mouth opens, she starts. Chanting stuff get stiff and then stands right up. This older woman who needed help into the seat, Uhhuh stands right up. He’s like, oh, well, uh, let me help you.

Uh, whatever. She pushes past him, goes out into the hallway and then floats levitates down the hall. Down the hall while he just kind of stands there staring like, oh, this is weird. All the way to the staircase. And then I have never seen a stair fall stunt like this in my entire life. I’ve seen a lot of people in movies fall down the stairs.

This woman takes out the entire banister on the way down. Oh my gosh. Just. Her body rips through each one of those wooden, ballast, whatever you call them, like they were made of balsa wood uhhuh, 

Craig: which they probably 

Todd: were. I was like, oh my God, this is intense. Right? And he’s up at the top and I’m sorry. But then we move on to the next part of the story from here.

Like, that’s the thing, like I’m 

Craig: just flabbergasted. Like where, what, like she just, she just levitated down the hall. Like, does that just happen in this road? Because he doesn’t see, like he’s, he seems, he doesn’t even more. By the fact that she fell down the stairs, then the fact that she floated all the way down the hall.

And 

Todd: I mean, he seems almost more horrified at what she was chanting than any of that other stuff, because that’s the thing that’s got his attention and that’s the thing he keeps talking about afterwards. Oh my goodness. So back to the hospital. Back to the hospital, he and Dr. Hughes have a conversation and I just, oh man.

I wish we had the time. I could just play this entire conversation out because every conversation between Dr. Hughes and Harry in the hospital is absolutely head scratching. H. Yes. The writing is so bad and it’s so contrived and, and they’re, they’re just, they’re angry minds and they’re each, they’re stolen from other movies and oh my God, it’s so stupid.

It’s so deliciously bad and they are playing it. This is what I mean. They are both playing it with the utmost seriousness. Her condition is, 

Craig: let’s say, 

Todd: uh, stabilized at the moment, 

Craig: stabilized. Is that all you’ve got to tell me is stabilized Mr. Erskine. She’s stabilized for now. You’ll have to be satisfied with that.

What happened in the operation? It, uh, but it wasn’t successful. I, uh, I was about to remove the growth when, uh, her pulse rate rose, her respiration drops so drastically. We had to discontinue. Well, what does all that mean?

I’ve dealt with tumors for 20 years. I’m the best there is. Top of the line. I have a million dollar research facility and a couple of Cadillacs to prove it. And very honestly, Karen Tandy’s got me stumped. Stumped, yes. Without going into too much detail, uh, her tumor doesn’t have any of the usual characteristics of tumorous tissue.

What Karen has is a. A 

Todd: fast 

Craig: growing swelling made up of flesh and bone.

You might almost describe it, uh, as a fetus.

Todd: On her neck looking off into windows and walking over the books and turning around. In the meantime, there is this giant computer console that I just, you know, it’s up staging them in this room no matter what they’re saying. I just can’t keep, can’t stop thinking. Why is there this insanely huge 1970s style computer console behind this guy’s desk?

I don’t. So distracting. I’m, I grew up, I was born in 70. And I remember at that time, computers were the size of like whole buildings. Right? You remember? 

Craig: You remember what computers were like when you were born? 

Todd: No. I remember shortly thereafter. I also remember pulling out the Encyclopedia Britannica reading all about computers and seeing photos of them, but nobody had anything like this in their office.

It was so hilarious. I’m like, well, that’s clearly gonna come into play at some point. Oh. Cause if it doesn’t, oh, it does. 

Craig: No, it’s great. It totally, it totally pays off. I, I, I mean, I don’t even know, like, what else? Okay, so they keep talking about this thing, like they, they just acknowledge, oh, well it is a fetus, like, 

Todd: right.

And 

Craig: it’s, and it’s, it’s growing really fast. So that’s always kind of in the background. And, and, and Harry, Harry, like when, when Karen, I guess, is well enough to listen, he repeats that chant to her, which like causes her to like scream like a lunatic. So, so then Harry, I have her name here. I have no idea.

Who she is. Harry asks Amelia for help with Karen, and Amelia says that they need to do a seance where Karen lives. Who is this woman I know. Is this just, is this just the woman that you go to if you need a seance, like I 

Todd: don’t, I Are we talking about Amelia or, or the bigger woman who is in the scene. Oh, 

Craig: I see.

Okay. Maybe I’m mixing them up. I’m talking about the older woman. Oh, that’s not even her. That’s Mrs. Carmen. Oh gosh. I don’t know who Amelia 

Todd: is either. Amelia and her partner MacArthur have like a pirate shop. I guess they’re dressed like pirates, I guess. Sailors, old timey sailors. And they have a shop that I thought initially was supposed to be like a shop of mystical occult type things, but on the inside it’s just a bunch of fishing nets and paraphernalia from ships and things, and That’s 

Craig: hilarious.

I had completely forgotten about them because really they’re just like the Scooby gang, like they’re just there to do research like, like Yes. 

Todd: That’s the perfect way to describe it. Oh my goodness. They’re 

Craig: just around in. You need to do research and then they are right on top of that 

Todd: and they don’t really ba it’s like, oh, they almost know what he’s talking about.

He is like, I think there’s something. And he makes so many leaps of logic. You know, this is one of those movies where the characters figure out exactly what is going on. Which is the most bizarre thing that could be going on with next to no clues. It’s just suddenly, and then it’s not like, let’s call the news reporters, let’s call scientists.

Let’s call the police. It’s like, no, let’s just me treat this as a given and talk to my other friends who are also gonna treat it as a given Uhhuh. And we’re all just gonna do these silly little things to try to, I, I guess exercise. I don’t, why did they decide they needed 

Craig: a seance? I don’t know. Because Amelia said So was it cause of the, 

Todd: was it cuz of the chanting?

Did she recognize the chanting 

Craig: as being maybe, I don’t know. They still haven’t figured out. They haven’t figured out what it is yet, I don’t think. Mm-hmm. They do soon. And again, it’s just like, oh well. Yep, that’s what 

Todd: it is then. 

Craig: Um, but so, Amelia, uh, Mack, who, whatever his name is, he’s Amelia’s guy, and Mrs.

Carmen, this blonde, older lady, d 

Todd: az, which by the way, we, we have no idea who this woman is. She just suddenly shows up in the group and is led downstairs. I know. Seriously. 

Craig: I was hoping that you would’ve like I, no, I thought surely I missed something. I don’t think 

Todd: so. Okay. Maybe he’s just there all of a 

Craig: sudden.

Maybe, you know, he’s like a psychic. Maybe he knows psychics. I don’t know. But they do this seance, and I love this scene. Like, oh, oh, it was 

Todd: so good. Like, this is the best say on scene I’ve ever seen in a movie. To 

Craig: describe it as good. I don’t even, like, I, I just don’t have a better word. Like I was on the edge of my seat.

I was like, oh my God, this is the best say on, 

Todd: I was all in on this movie when this happened. Oh, so all in the, the 

Craig: spirit first starts talking through the old blonde. But then like, and that’s what I expected. I’ve seen a bunch of seances in movies. They’re always pretty much the same. You know, the, the table shakes and the wind blows, and the glasses shattered.

You know, you’ve seen it a million times and this does that. But it also goes all in like with the lighting, the like, like neon color light, yes. And they’re like lit from down low so that you know, the shadows are going up their faces and stuff. It looks, I love it. Mm-hmm. But then out of what looks like a big poker table starts to come.

I hadn’t noticed anything unusual about the table before, but when they do a closeup on it, and I’m sure that this is just special effects, but it’s as though the surface is liquid and this head starts to emerge out and the head comes all the way up to its neck and then it. The head talks to them

Todd: and they all just stare at this like, well, good. This is what we are expecting to happen. 

Craig: And then they ask what it wants and it speaks incoherently and then goes back away.

What are you looking for?

It just showed up to be, to hey. Like it didn’t, it 

Todd: didn’t, it didn’t help them tell them anything? No, no, nothing. Nothing about this helped them. No. 

Craig: That it. Awesome. I 

Todd: loved it. And then the window blows open and a storm 

Craig: and the lightning strikes and blows up the 

Todd: table, breaks it in half. They go flying around the room.

Oh man, it was insane. And then 

Craig: here. And then here is the leap. Somebody says, That head kind of reminded me of something and Karen gives me, who was it? I have somebody. One of them is like, it kinda reminded me of like a cigar store, Indian, maybe a medicine man,

Todd: and they’re like, okay, 

Craig: that’s our next, I think you’re onto something. 

Todd: This is truly Scooby-Doo. It really is. Oh, so then they go and they visit Dr. Snow, who is Burgess Meredith being so Burgess Meredith. Oh, yes. It’s 

Craig: delightful. Oh, yes. It’s just a Burgess Meredith cameo for the sake of it, like, yes, and, and, and it’s, it’s great.

Dr. Hughes called you and told you that the tumor on her neck is definitely a fe. Now all I want from you, sir, is some kind of an explanation. No, you’re talking about my book now. What I wrote in my book, pardon me, uh, was um, purely a, well, it’s not here. It was purely a legend. It was a legend about a medicine man who was reborn in, uh, 1851 in the Upper Missouri among the hidatsa.

It is a case with very little documentation, but it had to do with a young Indian girl who developed a swelling on her arms. 

Todd: I love Ver just Meredith, I love him. He’s sort of like the Robin Williams of his time. Just very much more muted. He’s just kooky and I feel like the directors just go and action, right?

Just let him do whatever the hell he wants to do. Because that’s what this scene felt like he’s going through and he’s like this aged man, but he’s like, he’s an anthropologist, I suppose, and he’s 

Craig: the exposition. Is, is what he 

Todd: is. Yes. He’s, he’s exposition man, wanders through the place and is like making comments like, oh, I really need to clean this.

Or, oh, this is dusty. Or he’s saying this very matter of factly, like, oh yeah, this can happen. You know? Mm-hmm. Um, ancient Indian medicine men, their spirits will grow within people and eventually grow to full size and be born out of them. Then he, they wander upstairs to his attic. I guess it’s his. It was almost like a whole second floor on the house, I think.

But, uh, there’s this giant cobweb across the staircase that they have to push away. No, I didn’t even notice. It’s so comical. It’s like they just walked onto the monsters set, you know? Yeah. Borrowed it for this. Can he wanders and pulls out a book and does he tell ’em about the Manitou at this point? He 

tells.

Craig: Oh, um, what’s his name? The main guy asks him about Hannah Witchy salad tooth again. Yes. And, and, and finally, burgs Meredith can tell him that Hannah Witchy salad tooth is a language of an ex. Extinct tribe, and it means my death for tells my return. Thank God we waited 45 minutes for that payoff. I don’t know that I could have waited much longer.

And 

Todd: what did they get from that? Just that, because then they’re like, well, maybe he says maybe you guys should actually go talk to an Indian medicine man. 

Craig: Yeah, like, and he just says stuff that is just so, he like, he’s like, oh yeah, well, Dr. Snow, is there any way to stop this, this medicine man, or whatever it is before it kills her?

Well, you know what? You have to understand it that the magic of ancient. Indian tribes was very, very powerful. Oh damn. It’s even worse than I 

Todd: thought it. Oh boy. And by the way, as all this is going on, I’m thinking, I’m think I’m still thinking like, what about, uh, Karen? Yeah. 

Craig: Where is she? What’s your name Is just in a hospital bed, the whole.

Movie. This poor girl. Yeah. She, she, they like, she was totally set up to be the main character and I was down, like, she seemed interesting. I was interested in her weird tumor baby situation, but then she is, she’s just, she’s just gone. She’s face down. On Naked in a bed for the whole 

Todd: movie, basically alone in a room with just maybe one nurse attending him with this woman, with this giant baby, apparently throwing her 

Craig: back.

They keep showing like closeups of just like her. Back it covered with like a hospital blanket, thin blanket and the, it just keeps getting bigger. Like the lump on her back just keeps getting bigger and bigger. Uhhuh Oh, it’s about to get so good. Oh man. What, what do they do then? They go meet John singing rock an an actual medicine man played by not an Amer Native American.

Todd: Ah-huh. Michael 

Craig: Ansara. Yeah. And I read about this guy and he actually, uh, was concerned with representation and. There was at least one time that I remember that he turned down a role because he heard that it an, an actual Native American had been turned down for it or something like that. It was a different time.

I, I, you 

Todd: know, like, well, good for him for being a little more progressive and realizing, cuz most other people didn’t give 

Craig: a shit. Well, right. And who knows. I read that bit of trivia somewhere. I, I was just curious. Interested to know if he was actually a Native American man. I don’t know if it’s makeup or a wig or what.

He looks Native American or he, he doesn’t look Caucasian. 

Todd: Anyway. Yeah, it’s a decent enough, uh, approximation, I suppose, to not be like total red face, you know? Right, right, right, right. I mean, it is red face, but. 

Craig: It doesn’t look that bad. Right. I mean, it is. So, uh, he plays this medicine man, and he’s, you know, gosh, I don’t even know at this point.

The movie is feeling to me much like Poltergeist did you get a Poltergeist feel to it, especially bringing in, you know, the Native American who’s gonna, you know, that’s true. Help out with That’s very true. And then he’s, he’s the, there’s just, he tells him all of these things, and of course, as we are hearing them, We are learning them too.

And he is like, uh, yeah, the Gik Manitou is like Indian Jesus. He only literally says 

Todd: that. 

Craig: Yeah. And there’s the Manitou and then there’s the Gik Manitou. And then it turns out that everything is Manitou. It’s including 

Todd: a gun. A gun can be a Manitou, 

Craig: machines, computers, electricity, everything. I, I was curious.

So I looked into it. The Manitou is actually an Algonquin. Tradition and it kind of is what they say it is in the movie. It’s like the essence. Everything, things, both living and, and not, uh, it’s, it’s, it’s in everything. Um, so I mean, they’re drawing on a real thing. This is based on a novel, by the way. And now I desperately want to read this book.

Yeah, me too. And it’s 10 sequels. What? 

Todd: Are you kidding me 

Craig: there? It’s a, it’s a series of 11. I have no idea. Wh what characters it follows. I have no idea how it’s connected, but yeah, it was a series of 11 books. Wow. Oh my God. Wow. So anyway, then, so then once he picks up the medicine man, they go back to the hospital where they’re gonna try to remove the tumor with a laser.

However, Kara wakes up and stands awkwardly. In the corner while the laser goes crazy and starts shooting people and cutting through walls the laser and and causing 

Todd: explosions. I love the laser scene. It’s nuts. It is just absolute pandemonium. Yeah. It’s, you know, great. The effects in this movie when they’re not like, obviously like a little bad, like you can see the seams a few times.

They’re. Like the, they’re all in on them, you know? Oh yeah. Animated effects. The lasers going everywhere. Things are exploding and stuff. It’s, 

Craig: uh, yeah. This is an effects heavy movie. It’s insane. We have not even gotten started, like, keep moving like every, every five minutes. I’m going to say you. It only gets weirder from here, and I can say that legit.

Mm-hmm. Until the last five minutes of the movie like it is bananas. It’s absolutely crazy. 

Todd: Well, Ha, Harry, uh, and John are, they’re there now. And uh, now Karen is back in the bedroom again on the bed, face down, quiet, like all these crazy, all this crazy shit can happen. And then in the next scene, everything is like back to normal and everybody’s calmly discussing what they’re gonna do next and all the time, Harry is, somebody says we should call the police.

Harry just looks at them and goes, are you crazy? Call the police and give some, I don’t even know what his excuse is. 

Craig: I don’t either. Anything, none of it makes any sense. None of it makes any sense. It’s just gonna be 

Todd: these four people dealing with it basically. 

Craig: Yeah, I, I mean, when I say none of it makes any sense, I say that a lot about movies and that’s when things like just don’t connect like.

Things do connect in this movie. There’s an explanation for everything as far-fetched and crazy as it may be. Mm-hmm. They go out of their way. To explain everything. Yes. What, what doesn’t make any sense is how the people react to these situations. Yes. As though like, it’s really not that strange, like Uhhuh man.

I mean, I mean, this sucks, but it’s, you know, like, let’s, nobody’s, nobody’s perplexed about this. Like, well, I guess that’s just the way it is. 

Todd: Oh, it’s crazy. It reminds me of like a fifties B movie. You know, some black and white fifties B movie, some sci-fi thing where these crazy sci-fi things happen and then the scientists kind of retreat to their study and pull out pipes and start casually discussing the science of it all.

There’s just these huge breaks and all these crazy action scenes where everything’s back to normal and they’re all like, wow, that was weird. I’m even more concerned than I was before. But we can’t call the police. What are we gonna do now? And what they decide to do is John is gonna kind of exercise it or try to contain this.

I mean, I guess he realizes it’s gonna be born. Right. So we gotta contain it. And of course, the doctor’s totally willing to go along with this, and he draws a circle. He’s like, all right, first we need to draw a circle of sand around the body. He draws. Not even a full circle of sand around the body. The bed is pressed up against the wall.

I guess the wall is as good as sand for this spirit. He makes this big deal. Nobody break the sand barrier. Nobody touch it. Nobody mess it up or anything. But yeah, it, it’s more of a U-shape that stops at the wall and then he talks to the spirit, I think. Studs talking and

Craig: your medicine is of no,

what is your name?

Yes,

the whites little brother from the do not help them.

What’s the man what’s.

Greatest medicine man ball. Oh, these lines are just great. Like I, I, I wrote half of the script down because every line just cracked me up. Um, and, and he, Harry, or whatever his name is, is concerned about Karen and the, the medicine man’s like, well, if I win, she lives. If I lose, she’ll experience less pain than any of us and like it just, oh, I’m going to what?

Kiss on the lips, whoever wrote this dialogue because, oh, I was dying. God, I was Seriously, I read it was 

Todd: written in three days. Oh yeah. I know, I know. I mean, it shows, it wasn’t obviously of. It wasn’t edited or revised? No, 

Craig: it’s, I, I was seriously like, you know, I was watching it on my computer, but they would say these lines and I would pause to laugh and write it down, like laugh out loud because I thought it was so funny.

But I wanted to pause cause I didn’t wanna miss it. And sometimes I would hit that like back 10 seconds button and listen to it again because they’re just so funny. Mm-hmm. And. It’s not a comedy, like it’s 

Todd: dead serious about this. Like, this is supposed to be serious. I don’t even 

Craig: serious know how to describe it cuz like, it’s not even so bad.

It’s good because I don’t even think it’s that bad. Like, no, I like it. I, but it is 

Todd: silly. It’s a goofy script that everybody just went all in. Yeah. Really. I mean, that’s what it is. It’s 

Craig: silly. It’s super goofy. It’s DCU the greatest medicine man of all. And then for some reason, Henry is out of the room for a second and he comes back and somebody’s face gets smashed through the window.

Mm-hmm. And he looks in and the Manitou is almost. Out and I am dying. Like she is rith on the bed and, and she’s naked. You know, she’s covered from the waist down by a blanket, but from the top up naked. And her skin is like a flesh colored condom. There 

Todd: you go. 

Craig: Because it’s not really even taught. Like it’s, it’s al kinda loose.

It’s gross. Mm-hmm. And like you see things moving around under there and then you see its hands and then I, honest to God, did not think that it, this was, we were gonna see this happen the an arm. Starts to come out and I, I swear to God, like I am freaking out. I am like bouncing in my chair and then it cuts away for a second and then it cuts back.

And the man who like. Flops out onto the floor and starts pulling like army crawling slithering around the floor and, and then, oh my God, it, and then it kneels and prays and. I’m there by myself and I out loud. Is that a little person? And inexplicably, it’s a little person in a little demon suit. I, yes.

Like maybe it’s not fully grown yet. Like maybe that’s just the size that the demonn comes out and it’ll get bigger later. It was just such a shock to me. I know. And, and, and the, the creature costume makeup. I love it. It’s actually pretty cool. It’s, it’s, it’s slimy and great. 

Todd: I loved it. It had that look like, um, like kind of, they, they took all that care and like the wish master to give Yes.

You know, the demons face those kind of like high cheekbones and kind of angular features. And also like, he had a couple contacts in, I suppose uhhuh, like a yellow thing and they get these closeups on his eyes a lot. Yeah. Looking left and right cuz he can cyclically, manipulate things and he, there’s the body of the.

Orderly or whatever in the corner of the room, which then gets up and comes towards them like a zombie to try to attack. You know, the funny, the other funny thing about this is, is that people are dying and they just leave their bodies there. Nobody ever runs to try to help them to see if they’re still alive.

Craig: No. And this is in 

Todd: a hospital. Yes, it’s literally in a hospital and like there has been a corpse since this man’s head went through this window. There’s been a corpse in the corner of this room for like a good hour or two that nobody has touched, except at one point the doctor had said we should put a sheet over him.

He didn’t say, we should check to see if he still has a pulse, and this is the guy who gets animated and comes towards them. Yeah, I don’t remember what happens. Do they, they just kinda like the, the, 

Craig: at the last minute somebody shoots it or something. I mean, it’s, it’s, there’s a, it’s another nerve. It’s a suspenseful, uh, moment with no real payoff.

Yeah. From this point, for this is the form. Of the Manitou, this little person in a suit, and I love it. Uh, and I looked it up and the Manitou was played by, uh, two men, two little men and I, they both have worked a lot in the types of roles that you would expect, like, uh, star Wars. One of them was a dink in, uh, space Balls.

Oh, love, love that movie. You know, when they, they di. Ding, ding, ding, ding, ding. Yeah. One of those guys. Yeah. And one of them, and I don’t remember which was which, but one of them was, The blob operator in weird science, which I choose to believe means that he was the guy in the Chet Shit monster. Oh. But you can look, you can look at those guys’ resumes, their I M D B profiles and they, they work all the time.

All the time. They’re still working. And I love this, like, it’s just, it was so, it was unexpected. I expected it to be. Huge. You know, like, yeah. Some giant beast bursting out of her. No, it’s just this little guy. But he’s super uber powerful and I don’t know if you wanna talk about things in sequence, but, uh, from this point things just are nuts and everything that ha from this point.

Things are nuts. Yes. Everything that happened, Just almost brought a tear to my eye.

Todd: The thing that I think is crazy is that as soon as they summon this demonn, and he stands pretty patiently, I guess, by the foot of the bed for most of the rest of the movie, although a lot of time passes. Yeah, so much time passes that eventually they leave the room for a while. And just stand down the hall and smoke some cigarettes trying to figure out yeah, what they’re gonna do next.

Or waiting for something. There’s an ancient India demon just birthed out of the back of this woman’s back caught in this chalk circle or whatever, and you J just put another orderly there to just watch the door and yawn for a while. Yeah. I just kept thinking, What about poor Karen? Have they just completely written her off?

Craig: She’s in the circle. There’s nothing they can do. 

Todd: Like, nobody even mentions this. Nobody’s like, I’m worried about Karen. I hope Karen’s okay. She’s such an afterthought. Yeah. 

Craig: Until the very, very end. This is, this is also the like, again, they go. Extreme lengths to make sure all the puzzle pieces fit, because they tell us at this point that everything has a Manitou.

Yes. Even manmade things. Mm-hmm. And so you have to be careful because the Manitou can use. Manitou to like manipulate, like police guns and stuff like that. So we know that now, um, he, he skins the orderly and then makes a lizard appear. That’s my favorite part. That’s the part that I was trying to get to.

Um, somehow the Manitou breaks the circle. Uh, like psychically and then he chance to summon a demonn, and it is a ghost lizard, and it is just like, it’s a ghost lizards, literally. It’s like, it’s just like kind of superimposed over him. Like you would have to explain, like they just, they put another film over this film, right?

Mm-hmm. Or something like, 

Todd: It, it feels like in one, in one, in one or two shots, it looked like the Peppers ghost illusion, where they were projecting it on glass in front of ’em. But then there’s clearly a composite shot with, with the, the doctor’s hand gets bit by the ghost lizard. 

Craig: Yes. And, and then they say, I don’t know what Spirit Hill summon next I, I have in my notes Manitou chance to summon demon colon.

Ghost lizard, exclamation point. This is amazing. Exclamation point.

Oh, it was so good you guys. This was the middle of the day, like I was of sound mind. I told Todd, I texted Todd. I didn’t tell him anything about the movie. I was like, bro, this is gonna be fun. After I, yeah, and I had been having a bad day, like just not a great day. One of those days where you really have to pretend even more than usual that you can tolerate people.

And then I watched this in the early afternoon. And the, and the whole rest of the day was lovely.

It made me so happy and I couldn’t wait to talk about it. Yes. Oh God. The ghost lizard. What else, what else happens? Uh, the floor that Karen is on, Turns into 

Todd: a tundra. Yeah, it becomes a winter wonderland. Yes. 

Craig: Yeah, that looks like exactly like Kirksville high school Prom, 1993, winter wonderland. Like that’s what it looks like.

Yeah. It looks so 

Todd: bad. Paper mache like ice against the walls and like big, uh, dramatic icicles from the ceiling and oh, it looks really terrible. And they spent a lot of time in there too. They 

Craig: do. I loved it. Even the nurse, the desk nurse is completely frozen. Frozen. And then the, okay, so I have, John says I tried to stop him.

I tried everything. And then what happened? What caused all his ice? It’s a demon. We called the star. Spirit of

the wave. Greater demonn. What, what, 

Todd: what are they coming from? I don’t 

Craig: even know what my notes mean. Oh, oh my God. And then, and then the frozen nurse explodes. 

Todd: Oh my God. Yes. The spirit causes like a snowstorm to blast through and it breaks the windows, takes the nurse to pieces. Her head goes through a broken window.

Her arm flies off. Oh. It’s again, nobody gives a shit, by the way, about these people. Fantastic. And then he picks up a typewriter and throws it at the guy. A 

Craig: typewriter. It’s a seventies computer. It’s the size of a hay bale. 

Todd: Well, it’s like the size of a seventies electronic typewriter is what it is. It’s hilarious.

It is. It is big and heavy, but he chucks it at him. And then it stops everything. And that’s when John patiently reminds him the electronic manitou is what got 

Craig: me. Wait, wait, wait, wait. John, John, the medicine man’s like I’ve called on every spirit and Harry says, what about Gik? And, and, and John says, Harry, No one calls on gi, you Manitou, and then Harry says, yeah, well he’s about to get a personal call from me, collect.

Todd: And storms out of the room. Oh, I just love it that when he threw the typewriter at, at this guy, at this thing, that’s what stopped everything. And the explanation was, well, it, it’s the electronic man or two, you know, there’s a man or two in everything. And you know, and he keeps saying, well, don’t anybody bring the police.

What? Are you crazy? I’m thinking, bring the police, bring the police with all their guns, and let the bullet manatees take this guy out. 

Craig: No. Instead like, oh. And Syd somebody, Harry, because he’s like Colombo and MacGyver all in one. He’s, he’s like, he’s like, how much of this,

he’s like, he’s like, How much this electrical equipment do you have? Can you turn it all on at 

Todd: once?

Craig: Oh my God. I, I swear to God, I have the, I have it all written down. Supposedly took the Manitou of all this machinery in this hospital and turned it on all at once and direct the energy toward the mixmaster. It might just work.

Todd: But at this time, the whole room shakes up. Like literally the room looks like it’s falling apart. This is a room, by the way, on like the top floor of this skyscraper. And the walls are moving and the floor is coming apart into pieces, and then it all just stops and the room is normal again. And uh, that’s when John says, oh, the great old one is coming.

A powerful Satanic demonn. The great devourer is opening a. We better act fast, we better act 

Craig: fast. So they get back to car’s room. Oh God. Like at this point you’re like, what more could they give? Like if it were my birthday, if it were my birthday, what else could they do? 

Todd: I would’ve asked. For like, I don’t know, like a Star Wars style laser space Galaxy 

Craig: Shootout.

And that’s exactly what you would get my friend. 

Todd: Oh, just when you think, my God, somebody on production would be like, you know, that’s too silly. Somebody else was 

Craig: like, Nope. Doing it f and a doing it, opening a door, twilight zone style to outer space. Set up the camera. 

Todd: That’s literally what happens. They open the door and it is suddenly like outer space, like you said, like the intro to the Twilight Zone, where there’s a door floating through outer space with stars and everything, and it opens.

It’s like they’re, they are in that door looking in on this, and it’s Karen in her bed, and 

Craig: they will stay there. Until the movie is over, 

Todd: Manitou is floating around over on one side of the galaxy. Karen Herbet over here on the other side of this galaxy, they’re staring standing in the door. Not nearly as shocked as I would be.

Oh no, if I were in this spot, they’re not at all surprised. It’s coming the great cosmic battle or something. So Dr. Hughes, thankfully now we know why he has the console in his office so that he can turn on and control all the machines in the entire building. Which the act of turning them on apparently starts to raise the energy.

Yeah. 

Craig: But just before that, the great old one appears behind the Manitou and it’s just like a light show. Like it, it’s with an eyeball. It’s right. It’s reminiscent of like the journey through Willy Wonka’s tunnel. That’s 

Todd: exactly what I was thinking. It’s a light show with an occasional shocking image.

Right, exactly. Mostly of an eye. 

Craig: Exactly. Mm-hmm. Love it. But you’re right then. They turn it all on at once 

Todd: you see that the hospital are smoking, 

Craig: how much of this electrical stuff do you have? Can you turn it all on at once? Somebody wrote that, not just the lines, the plot point like that I know is a plot point.

I, I swear to God, I want to meet. Oh man. The director was one of the writers. And you can’t meet him cause he died. He died before the movie even came out. Isn’t that 

Todd: sad? And a helicopter crash in the Philippines. It’s really sad. It, uh, he made some interesting things before this that I kind of want to go back and watch now.

Craig: I know. And then I was reading something about this movie. I couldn’t find a lot about it. Kind of, uh, disappointing. I wanted all the tea, like I wanted all the backstory about this movie, and there just isn’t much to be found, at least that I could find. Um, but this poor guy, uh, had done a couple of other Slacky movies and he did this movie and yeah, he was scouting, uh, for another movie and he died in a helicopter crash.

And the article that I read was like, what a bummer, because. Think of all the wacky movies we could have gotten and, and I have never seen anything like this. We should tell the end. We should talk about the end. I’m getting ahead of myself, okay? Mm-hmm. Mm-hmm. Okay. So Harry says, all right, Ms. Meekus. I’ve had enough of this.

Who do you think you are? We’re not gonna scream anymore at each other. Miss Mancuss, you listen? 

Todd: Yes. Yes for, and 

Craig: the machine’s manatees. Are focusing their power. Karen finally gets her moment like, like if, like at first, at first, it seems like it’s not gonna work. Like it seems like, oh no, the machine’s Manitou aren’t on our side.

But then. The machine’s, Manitou start working for them and apparently like Karen talked ’em into it, I guess, because now all the machines are focusing their Manitou through her, so she sits up in bed naked from the waist up. Boobs out looking, banging, looking like she just got a blowout. She is fresh out of the salon looking hot and they focus all their power through her and she shoots a laser beam at the manure.

She 

Todd: shoots, shoots lasers out of her arms for a while. Actually, there’s a lot of laser shooting. Fireball. 

Craig: There’s all kinds of stuff going on. There are meteorites. 

Todd: There are meteorites coming at them. They’re literally dodging meteorites crazy when she’s shooting with her lasers. Oh man. 

Craig: And then the great one shoots fireballs at them.

But Karen hits it with her lasers and her power goes through the big space eyeball and it blows up like the 

Todd: death 

Craig: star. Yep. And then Harry and Karen embrace, 

Todd: And, and John’s explanation was, because this, because Karen sits up right after Harry chews out the monster and John says, it was your love that brought her back.

Yep. Damn. Straight. And that’s the end. And then it’s like, well that was weird. 

Craig: And then, and then, so then like, uh, Harry is like putting John in a cab and he is like, well, I guess we’re fine. The man of two’s dead. And John. His body is dead, but his spirit lives on, and then it cuts to an aerial shot of the city and a text comes up that says, fact.

Tokyo Japan, 1969, a 15 year old boy developed what Dr. Slot was a tumor in his chest. The larger it grew, the more uncharacteristic it appeared even. It proved to be a human fetus, right? 

Todd: Like we needed this at the end, right? Like I needed some reassurance that this movie is based in reality. Please show me this fact on the, the 

Craig: screen.

No, Todd, I was shocked. I had no idea that this was based on a true story. I was just blown away.

Todd: Right. Wow. 

Craig: I’m glad that they saved it for the end because I would’ve been skeptical otherwise. Mm-hmm. 

Todd: Mind blown. 

Craig: Oh, man, alive, I tell you what, this is one of my new favorite movies. Mm-hmm. I don’t say that very often, but this movie. Fantastic. 

Todd: This is right up there with blood rage and uninvited, as far as I’m concerned.

Yeah. 

Craig: Okay. So for me it would be like, it rivals for me. Death Spa de. The difference is, Ooh, the difference is Death Spa was intentionally silly. Right. And I don’t think that this one. Is? Mm-hmm. They’re just different. Love them both. I don’t know. There was another one, another B bad movie that the cat 

Todd: We The cat.

The cat on the boat. The uninvited, the cat, the evil cat 

Craig: ins in the cat. Mm-hmm. On the boat? Mm-hmm. That one too. I really like that movie too. Oh, this one is in a class all it’s own. Yes. I refuse to call it a bad movie. I don’t think it’s a bad movie. I think it’s original. I think the plot line. Interesting.

As crazy as it is, and it’s, it’s not really full of holes. Like you have to just get on board with it. Mm-hmm. And just accept that, okay, that’s what it is. But they did explain 

Todd: it even though no, people aren’t really acting logically in the face of thing. No. You know. No, not like that’s a. Generally, and 

Craig: I don’t know, even, even the things that sh like the, the frozen floor, it looks terrible.

I didn’t even care. Mm-hmm. I was so into the movie, I’m like, oh, that looks awful. Who cares? This is fun, right? Like, oh my God, especially f I swear to God from. Up until the seance. I was like, uh, it’s all right. I’m, I’m sure we’ll find interesting things to talk about Seance on. I was giddy. I was giddy. The movie was so fun because it was so ridiculous.

Uh, it was great. 

Todd: Yeah. You know, it’s not terribly reviewed. It’s odd because this seems like the kind of movie people would just dump on like relentlessly in kind of in a mean way. And the reviews, it’s that I read are quite kind to it. They’re all just saying the same thing. We’re saying like, this is absolutely absurd, but it’s got some fun special effects and the acting is pretty good.

There’s a couple instances where the acting’s kind of crazy, but it’s the script that makes the acting look silly. Yeah. Yeah. That’s. But we got great actors in here and Oh man, how nuts. I 

Craig: love it. I can’t believe I’ve never heard of it. It’s so strange. Me too. And, uh, you know what, there’s very little trivia about it.

I know. I looked, I, I tried harder than I usually try. I usually hit up the regular spots I M D B, Wikipedia, you know, do a, a regular Google search. I, I looked for stuff here and I just couldn’t find anything and I was disappointed. Yeah, because I can only imagine there are. Stories. There have to be, oh, come on.

Yeah. Maybe someday. Who knows? I wanna see 

Todd: all this director’s movies. I wanna see Project Kill Abby, asylum of Satan and Three on a meat Hook. All of them sound 

Craig: great. Abby, I think was a fairly blatant exorcist ripoff. As is this one really? Mm-hmm. And, and that’s totally, yeah. Like if somebody’s gonna s of Rip off of the Exorcist.

Yep. Sure is. Sure is. Yeah. Uh, and I liked it anyway. It, it gave me Poltergeist vibes too, uh mm-hmm. In a lot of ways. Which again, another one of my favorite movies, two of my favorite movies. Giving me those vibes. Give it. I love it. 

Todd: It’s also one of the very few movies that have, you know, native American spiritual elements to it.

And I’ve, and I know this because I think we might have discussed this when, you know, when we were doing a movie or two, but I’ve been on the lookout for them because I was hoping that we could put together a whole theme month of this kind of stuff. And there’s not a lot of it out there. So yeah, it’s groundbreaking in so many ways.

Craig: Yeah, I don’t know about that, but, oh gosh. Friends, friends of the podcast. Oh, I hope, I really, really hope that you took our advice and, uh, went and watched it before you listened to this, but if you didn’t, oh man alive, like, do it. Oh, please, please go now because if, if you like the kind of stuff we like, and maybe you don’t, but if you do, oh, you’re gonna like this movie.

You’re gonna have a good, it’s on shutter. Good time. 

Todd: It’s on Shudder. Probably other places, probably. Well, thank you Craig, for choosing the movie this week. Thank you listeners for listening in. If you enjoyed this episode, please share it with a friend. If you’ve seen this movie, please let us know what you thought about it.

As we said, we could talk about it all day. We can continue that discussion online. You can find our Facebook page, leave us a comment there. You can find our website. Leave us comments there. You can join our patrons and, uh, we always have back back, uh, I want to say backdoor. That sounds bad. We always have, um, you know, kind of a backroom conversation going with our patrons, uh, throughout the, the week about the movies that we do.

Just check out patreon.com/chainsaw podcast or Google “Two Guys and a Chainsaw podcast” to find all those things and more. We also have an Instagram and a Twitter if you’re into that. Until next time, I’m Todd. And I’m Craig, with Two Guys and a Chainsaw.


One Reply to “The Manitou”

  1. Laurence Farrant

    Honestly the best horror podcast
    Makes me laugh out load
    Manitou Being my favourite
    Guys keep it coming
    Laurence from Wales

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