Amid Herschell Gordon Lewiss oeuvre, Something Weird sits in a category of its own, being neither one of Lewiss splatter films nor one of his nudies. Amid Lewiss frequently hyperbolic titles, at least the title Something Weird sums the film up perfectly. The opening only give some hint of the bizarreness that is to follow a woman is pursued by a maniac and the frame freezes on her being attacked before a white face is dangled into camera; the action then cuts to a man making out with a woman and her saying Alex, youre electrified whereupon we abruptly cut to the image of a man falling from a roof after touching an electrical cable. The plot is completely demented. There is a bizarre scene where peeved witch Elizabeth Lee takes revenge on Bill Brooker after he develops a case of lust for her by trying to cause his bed sheets to strangle him. Lewis even manages to jump aboard the fad for LSD films, which became a sudden new vogue in 1967 (the same year that Timothy Learys experiments with the drug had it banned by Congress). Here the parapsychological researcher (Bill Brooker) suggests with astonishing casualness that Tony McCabe take some LSD so that it will enhance his psychic potential. An incredibly dull LSD sequence transpires towards the end of the film where Tony McCabe wanders through the desert and confronts the killer where everything is shot with an orange tint and partially through a kaleidoscopic lens. The film arrives at a bizarre ending where Tony McCabe is shot, Bill Brooker tells Elizabeth Lee that he deliberately let McCabe die so that he could have her, she reveals her true witchs visage to him, he flees in horror but trips and falls on a construction site and disfigures his face on a burning lamp, whereupon she comes and offers to heal his looks as long as he is her lover and we see the cycle repeating itself all over again.
There are other moments of sheer bizarreness that cause Something Weird to rank highly as a Psychotronic classic. Indeed, it seems exceedingly possible that the entire film may have not only been conceived but also directed under the influence of LSD. There is surely the least convincing witch ever in the history of cinema she turns up in a completely phoney quavering falsetto cackle, wearing a scarf, floral print dress, a yellow shawl and with white greasepaint on her face. There is possibly the dullest and most inept séance scene ever put on screen where the party assembled merely say that there is something at the window, we then cut to the camera moving through the group in what is supposedly the never-seen ghosts point-of-view as everybody tries to act scared, and finally we see a badly faded piece of film that tries to make it look as though Tony McCabes chair is being levitated (although equally possibly this could just be Herschell Gordon Lewis moving his camera down while McCabe is positioned against a white wall).
The film has a theme about playboys and mens looks that said, lead playboy/psychic Tony McCabe looks like a weasel with perfect skin and Brylcreemed hair. He gets some hilarious pick-up lines, approaching Elizabeth Lee in a restaurant after threatening off a drunk: Im Cronin Mitchell. Pretty girls in trouble usually call me Mitch and they always ask me to join them. A few minutes later, Bill Brooker greets his secretarys peck on the cheek: Not tonight pussycat, have to leave.
As usual, there is the near total technical ineptitude of a Herschell Gordon Lewis in the handling of actors, in the photography that looks as though it has been processed in a spin drier, everything. Indeed, Something Weird is possibly the most technically inept of all of Herschell Gordon Lewiss films.
Herschell Gordon Lewiss other splatter films are: Blood Feast (1963), Two Thousand Maniacs! (1964), Color Me Blood Red (1965), A Taste of Blood (1967), The Gruesome Twosome (1967), The Wizard of Gore (1970), The Gore Gore Girls (1972), Blood Feast 2: All U Can Eat (2002) and The Uh-Oh Show (2009).