The Oily Maniac Is One Crude Dude

The Oily Maniac

Before he became the anti-superhero Oily Maniac, polio-crippled legal assistant Shen Yuan visits his uncle in jail just moments before being executed for defending his niece from shady thugs who want to take over land that doesn’t belong to them. Just before dying, the uncle shows Shen a tattoo on his back that, when translated, turns the invoker into a creature made of oil that has super strength. So much for keeping the floors clean.

The Oily Maniac

After seeing his beloved in the arms of one of the criminals who caused his uncle’s death (she was unaware), Shen pops his top and translates the invocation. He’s to first dig a hole in the middle of his house, sit in it while chanting (kinda sounds like my neighbor when he goes to the bathroom) and waits for the spell to happen. (Again, neighbor.) When it does, bubbling, stinky and steamy oil fills up the hole and envelopes Shen in it. Seconds later, he pops out, growling, with glowing red eyes and looking like he slept in an unflushed public restroom toilet all night. Then he makes revenge happen.

The Oily Maniac

Doesn’t take long: a woman lies in court about her neighbor raping her. Then he discovers his adulterous boss is tricking clients out of thousands. Then he discovers a woman performing illegal abortions without actually being a doctor. Oil’s well that doesn’t end well for all.

The Oily Maniac

Where the 40-weight hits the fan is when Shen finds out his girlfriend was raped by a criminal who was working with her boyfriend. It was all a trick to get the inherited land — now worth millions — away from her. After she awakes from being knocked unconscious prior to the violation, she discovers the truth and kills herself with a hay baling hook laying nearby. Okay, ouch.

The Oily Maniac

This drives Oily Maniac super crazy and he goes to a gas station and pumps diesel fuel all over himself to lube up. I’m pretty sure diesel fuel doesn’t come out of the nozzle like black goop. But hey, this is Malaysia in the ‘70s, so what do I know. Maybe diesel is a delicacy or something in that country. Oily takes on the entire gang down at the docks. He can jump like Spider-Man and turn himself into an animated, traveling puddle of goo, reforming himself when wrongness needs to be righted.

The Oily Maniac

Even with all the completed revenge, it doesn’t end up in the win column for Oily. And once he’s run out of life fuel, he turns back into a dead Shen. Thus sadly ends The Oily Maniac (aka, You gui zi/1976), one of the Shaw Brothers’ weirder, but fun movies. It should be noted that there’s bare women parts (just tops and a few bottoms). But not enough to give you gas.

 

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