(Steve DiMarco, 1985)
Emmeritus Productions tries its hand at the anthology thriller with this one. While it falls on the earnest side of their sensibility, it can't help but partake of these folks' usual campy underachievement. "Country Hospitality", the middle episode, has the most energy, a plot that comes close to making sense, and an inspired twist at the very end. But I wish the mute got more screen time, and as usual the villain here is a one-dimensional putz. "A Symbol of Victory" is the classic shlub buys a love potion scenario, and it achieves a degree of pathos, but the characters are remote and the storyline is preposterous. The final story, "The Injection", is even more ridiculous in its plot logic, but still there's something compelling about the down-at-the-heels losers at its center, and the production values are so low that it lends the skid-row setting an authenticity that can't be bought. Check out the jaded sex-worker dialogue in the diner for a true highlight that has nothing to do with camp. The framing device is a mother telling the stories of her three sons to a reporter in a church; but weren't the protagonists of "The Injection" brothers themselves? Did I miss something here? Or is this just Emmeritus working their inimitable magic yet again?