Psychomania or The Death Wheelers (1973)   Leave a comment


What a bad film.

A gang of way too pretty British bikers called The Living Dead terrorize motorists and generally annoy people. They have so much fun at it, they decide to kill themselves so they can come back from the dead and act like fools forever. Sounds logical. Toads play a part somewhere though the movie never says how. People catch toads, wear toad rings and pendants and feed toads in a weird modern art terrarium.

Psychomania A
“Later, we’ll have toad-kebabs!”

The leader of The Living Dead, Tom Latham (Nicky Henson) lives with his mum (Beryl Reid) in an über modern mansion that looks like something out of A Clockwork Orange. He must be rich because his butler is George Sanders who looks bored and a bit drunk. Honestly, Sanders must have lost a bet. Anyway, the destructive and somewhat aimless bikers discover that if they die, they’ll come back to life so they can do more stupid crap. That seems fun so the thirty-year-old teenagers keep offing themselves and coming back to life.


Since they don’t do anything vastly different when they come back than they did before they died, I’m not quite sure why they bother and after 45 minutes of this I lost the will to live. I guess I was supposed to care if they lived or died, but the characters were so poorly drawn and the story so dull, I just wished it would end. Don Sharp directed this film also called The Death Wheelers. It’s not a tour de force, exactly. Mostly, the camera sits still as the bikers ride around and kill themselves off, which is fun. I did like that part. They also wear nifty motorcycle jackets and turtlenecks with funky, gigantic goggles. I’m not sure that’s enough to hang an entire film on though. As I said, it’s a bad film, but it can be a fun watch.

“Please kill me.”- George Sanders

I’m still not clear on the whole toad thing, but no matter. Toads don’t figure enough in biker films these days.

“Someone point me toward my bike. I can’t see a thing.”


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