Thirty years ago, Portland filmmaker Don Gronquist spent 19 nights at Pittock Mansion in West Hills shooting a low-budget slasher flick called Unhinged.
The movie had it all: buckets of blood, voyeuristic shower scenes, a
squealing synthesizer score, even a jar full of pig eyeballs.
It was too much for the British government to handle. In 1983, just as the movie was beginning to fly off video store shelves across the U.K., Parliament banned the film. A victim of the uproar over so-called "video nasties"—cheaply made, direct-to-video horror movies laden with sex and gore—Unhinged went virtually unseen, in any country, for two decades. In Portland, it screened only once.
In honor of the 30th anniversary of this lost piece of local film history, Willamette Week is resurrecting Unhinged...and its director.
On Tuesday, August 21, the Hollywood Theatre hosts a one-night-only screening of Unhinged. The movie begins at 9:45 pm. Tickets are $5. And Don Gronquist, a forgotten pioneer of the early Portland independent film scene, will introduce the film.
The Hollywood Theatre is located at 4122 NE Sandy Blvd., 281-4215. Tickets available at the door and for advance purchase here.