13 December 2010 | Wazzathekiller
Tales of terror on the highway to hell
Back in 1997 Garris tried to get a horror anthology of the ground and as it didn't kick off turned the pilot episodes into a TV movie working with two authors (Barker and King) he's worked with before and since. A few years later he found the right combination with the infinitely better Masters of Horror series.
Quicksilver Highway involves Doc Emmett Brown (Lloyd) as Aaron Quicksilver, (a guy dressed in fetish gear that hasn't seen the sun in years) traveling America and digging up stories from its dark heart. The first story he tells is King's 'Chattering Teeth' which is woeful in the extreme. The second is Barker's 'The Body Politic' which is a far greater story but still not done particularly well here.
Chattering Teeth has virtually no element of horror to it whatsoever. A guy picks up a vaguely menacing hitchhiker but he sure ain't no Rutger Hauer. They crash the van and the toy teeth the guy was given at a road-stop start mauling the hitcher and then cut the guy free of his seat-belt. Short but pointless. But as Lloyd himself says, his stories have no moral and no point, 'they're just stories'.
Now while I haven't read 'Chattering teeth' (and have no desire to after this) I have read 'The Body Politic' and its an amazing story as are pretty much all those contained in Barker's 'Books of Blood' anthology. A classic tale of revolution where body parts rebel against the governing body. Not so good here. The voices of the hands are a bit too cute. They should be mean muthas ready to take on the world. The hand effects are pretty ordinary as well. The hands were much better on Frewer who turns in a great performance which saves this. There's also a lot of people running around clutching bloody stumps which straight away makes it better than the previous story.
Overall not great but it would have been hampered by the low budget and the fact that as it was made for a prime-time TV slot the gore was left back on the highway. The acting is good (Lloyd, Frewer) but Mick doesn't really get it right here. I was gonna give it 5/10 but the fact Clive Barker is it in when they're pumping fat from a bloated carcass raised it up a notch.