Saturday, October 18, 2014

Fright Night (1985)

These days, movies like The Wicker Man (remake) come out where they get famous based solely on a few minutes of schlocky fun, when really the rest of the movie isn't like that and is, for the most part, a sizable step down in quality from said schlocky fun. But the film gets “so bad it's good” praise from people anyway despite the fact that they're really just praising that short few minutes of schlocky fun.

Well...everything has to start somewhere!


Director: Tom Holland
Starring: William Ragsdale, Chris Sarandon

Fright Night is a 1985 horror comedy that got a lot of lip service back in the day, which I'm pretty sure was for the bangin' 80s music and visuals. Yeah! Shake those hips.


The 80s was the only time you could get your party on and get a relaxing back massage at the same place.

But the movie doesn't start off with such extravagant extremes, no; instead we get a much humbler opening of main character Charley Brewster almost having sex with his girlfriend Amy, but she pulls back at the last second, feeling nervous I guess. Then she changes her mind again and wants to do it, but by that time, Charley's goldfish-sized attention span has gone to the next logical place – the weird stuff happening across the street, like new neighbors moving in.


You know, the common hierarchy: New neighbors are more important than sex. Just how it goes, guys.

"Honey, your total willingness to have sex with me is less important than two guys carrying a box around outside. We have a good relationship!"

Downstairs, they get into a fight because he didn't want to have sex when she was ready. Uh excuse ME young lady, but weren't YOU the one refusing HIM sex like five minutes ago? You guys have as much synchonicity as two parallel lines running for miles without intersecting. People on other sides of the planet have better chemistry. A blind guy and a deaf girl could connect better.

The mother, even despite hearing this conversation, continues planning her son's marriage to this girl. Are you just really desperate? I guess the fact that Charley, given the rest of the movie, was able to land a girlfriend at all was so mind-fuckingly, rainbow-burstingly amazing to her that she now insists he marry the chick before he screws it all up as she knows he will.


But it's okay – there's a vampire moved in across the street! Charley knows this because he's apparently related to that jackass from From Dusk Til Dawn 2 – think about it; the same vacant stares, the same lack of any likability AND the same paranoid delusions about vampires validated in implausible ways! Plus they both get distracted from sex by what's on TV. Long lost brothers, you have finally found each other.

You can tell by the identical vacant, wide-eyed stares of dumbfounded idiocy on their faces.

Although overall, Fright Night is the better movie. Why? Because the main character in From Dusk Til Dawn 2 never got the hamburger in the face he deserved:

*slow clap*

So apparently the story here is that Charley saw some really hot prostitute going over to the house next door and then saw her later get killed by the guy next door, who is a vampire. He knows he's a vampire because he was spying on the hot naked chick and then saw...well, vampire shenanigans, I guess is the best way to put it!

"I could have had actual sex with a willing girlfriend if I hadn't been such a dick-cheese and spent more time looking out the window! BUT BOOBS! OOOOHHH!"
That's another thing - a big plot point throughout the first act is Jerry the vampire mad at Charley for exposing him. But Jerry has no fucking problem leaving a window open while he's showing off his vamp powers? C'mon, man - get with the program.

The next day he sees a news report that says a “known prostitute” was killed last night – i.e. the same chick Charley saw in the window. But, uh, how does one become a known prostitute to the level of being mentioned as such on the news? How did she get such a reputation? Maybe she has a Facebook page. Yes, I know it's 1985. Shut up.

Charley calls the only black guy in this movie's world, a cop who comes over and investigates with the panache and professionalism I expect from dumb 80s horror movies – he basically acts like a debate moderator. He lets Charley hurl wild accusations and then turns to the guy at the house and goes, “Well, what do you have to say about that?” Dude, nobody's getting points for the strengths of their argument here. Fucking do your job, or go home.


He's my third favorite movie cop. Right behind the guy from Dead Silence and Danny Glover in Predator 2.

After the vampire dude's helper convinces the detective nothing's going on, Charley storms out after the detective screaming like an insane person that VAMPIRES EXIST! Because that's sure to win him over, ya know, like it does most good cops. I love the way the detective screams at him before he gets in the car – he says if Charley bothers him again, he'll lock him up FOREVER!

"I regularly kidnap law abiding citizens who annoy me and lock them up in grimy dungeons with no hope of escape! SO DON'T CROSS ME, BOY!"

Well, I do agree Charley needs to be locked up. But I don't know if you have enough evidence yet. Give me a call sometime, man; I'll help you plant drugs in his room so you have probable cause.

Then Charley goes to find his TV hero, Peter Vincent, who makes a living as a character even less credible than the Crypt Keeper. But for some reason, Charley seems to think this guy is the answer – a fucking TV actor is apparently the most credible expert in this world.


The common expression anyone who interacts with Charley gets within thirty seconds of speaking to him.

Are you going to call Christopher Lloyd next time you need help on your science project that involves traveling back in time? Maybe call Bill Murray next time you need help fighting a ghost?

I guess it's a funny enough scenario for a comedy, but I just have to wonder about Charley's sanity at this point. Maybe the kid who starts believing in vampires in the span of two seconds looking out his window, to the point where he decorates his room with some rather questionable feng shui:

He's a born again idiot.

...maybe it's time to start asking around about which mental hospital has the best security, hmm?

Either way, we can all agree on one thing – the kid playing Evil Ed was clearly directed to act like he was on a manic drug trip with no clear stopping point.


"I'M GONNA NEED DENTAL WORK AFTER ALL THIS TEETH-GRINDING!"

I just don't know what to say about this except that I really want to go back in time myself now and see what exactly director Tom Holland was telling this guy: “Okay, act like you're strung out on heroin, haven't slept in four days and just took a triple shot of Espresso to compensate! And like you were also raised in a den of insane clowns in a traveling circus. Yeah! Now we got this horror movie performance down.” Oh 1985 – never go away.

Also, what's up with Amy's clothing choices? Is she just wearing the entire GoodWill catalog's fall edition? I mean fuck, it's not that cold, woman – you can take off a sweater or two!



But this is all just window dressing for the main plot of Charley, Ed and Amy getting Vincent to come with them and prove the neighbor, Jerry Dandridge (you know, a name I would expect any fearsome vampire to have) is a vampire. They do this by making him drink some fake holy water. When Charley tries to point a cross at Dandridge, which actually makes him flinch and recoil, the rest of the gang tells him don't be silly, etc.

"My, what big fangs you have."

You idiots, all he has to have now is a fucking neon flashing sign saying I'M A VAMPIRE to be any more obvious! How do you not see it?!?

But I'm not one to just bash ONE side of stupidity – I also think it's pretty lame how douchey Charley acts when they're all walking home later, just screaming hysterically about vampires and insulting his supposed “friend” Ed. 
As much as I think the Ed character was probably a product of drug-induced insanity, at least he's funny. Charley right now is about as likable as pond scum. Yeah man - you insult your friends and sulk like a big crybaby. You won this argument.

So after a dumb joke where Ed pretends to be attacked, screams and worries his two friends, they part ways and then hear him scream again. Even though it's been several minutes and he has no reason to do another joke exactly like the one from before – it's a horror movie convention that they do the whole “boy cries wolf” routine and ignore him. Even though THIS time he really is in trouble!


"It is I, Fabio's obscure vampire cousin, here to put you out of your misery!"

Yes, now he's a vampire. And also the thing everyone remembers about this movie – nobody really cares about the rest of it; just Evil Ed the vampire. He pretty much acts the same as he did before this, which is to say he acts like a man in the throes of a psychotic breakdown. But now he has a voice that sounds like your grandmother after someone dropped a piano on her pinky toe. So there is that...

He just wants a hug. Though I understand if his scenery-chewing abilities frighten you. He could devour you whole, and not just because he's a vampire.

In addition to that wonderful addition to cinema canon, we get a scene where he has a cross burned into his head. I'm sure he'll have fun attending Westboro Baptist Church meetings from now on.


Meanwhile, at a dance club, Jerry Dandridge (they really couldn't give him a cooler name? Even something generic like Lord Darkness or something?) seduces Amy and takes her away – because I guess 1980s glitter and neon lights just make anyone look more appealing. He takes her back to his house and plays Dress Up like a Toga Frat Party:



Only I'm not sure those parties usually had biting involved. Eh, maybe they did.

So I guess Charley and Vincent team up to go to the house and fight Dandridge. Dandridge's henchman shows up and Vincent ends up shooting him in the face – it would have been funny if that was just the end of it, but alas, he's been turned into a vampire now. So like most of the time when you kill a vampire, he melts into Nickelodeon slime. 


Iiiiiiiiiit's slime time!

We get some more really drawn out scenes, with one really memorable one in the mix somewhere – it's when Peter Vincent goes over to Charley's house and finds Evil Ed under the covers of Charley's mom's bed. After some truly silly and hammy lines where he somehow makes the simple explanation of Charley's mom leaving dinner in the oven for him sound like a goddamn theatrical production. Gee. Really reaching for the bottom of the barrel there, huh? Really no better jokes you could have used than “Dinner's in the oven”?



Then Ed turns into a wolfman and fights Vincent that way. Unfortunately, every hammy over the top 80s performance must come to an end.

"Dammit, another incident where I end up alone in a stranger's house with a naked teenage boy."

Good thing, too; if he had kept going, he probably could have created a black hole and sucked up reality into an alternate dimension where this kind of acting is considered Shakespearean. And that world, my friends, is one I tremble to imagine.

When Vincent gets back over to the other house, they have an extremely long fight scene during which time I'm positive the casting crew, makeup artists and others had time to do their nails, read the rest of Moby Dick, work out real estate deals for new houses, write shitty scripts for unmade Fright Night sequels and work on their memoirs for appearing in a film that somehow drags out this story to two hours.

"I will not be killed by Ray Harryhausen scraps!"

I'm sorry, I was dozing off a bit there.

Anyway, they kill him by punching holes in the wall until he explodes and then driving a stake through his heart, which somehow makes him stand up as if he were a yard rake and you stepped on its teeth.

And he also makes squeaky noises if you punch him in the face.

Either way he's dead and the whole thing is finally over. Amy even turns back into a human, which I didn't know could happen – but hey, vampires. They're wacky! I think mostly they just wanted to spare the world more of this "vagina face" style makeup job:


Eugh. Did somebody just fall asleep when they were doing her face?

So then the movie ends with Charley and Amy back in his room having sex again. Because she's such a good catch, he of course gets distracted by the TV again, proving that he has learned nothing and that they are truly made for each other.

Oh ho ho. In their future I see plenty of nights where the deep hatred stewing between them reaches a near-boiling point as she tries to give him a handjob after making dinner and cleaning the house and he shrugs her off without looking at her because hey, Sons of Anarchy is on and he wants to see what happens next. After months of turgid arguments where she cries how he just doesn't understand her and he says what do you want from me, and she says I just want you to listen to me for once, and then he just shrugs her off and goes down to the bar for a drink and to watch the game in the peace of all the other tired, frustrated old men, and he comes back to find that she's trashed the place in a rage, spray painted FUCK YOU on the walls in bright purple, and gone to live at a lesbian nudist retreat for the rest of her life.

At least I think that's how it goes. You can change up a few details if you want. Never let it be said I don't make this blog interactive – you can give 'em a happy ending if you like.

This movie is just silly. It's got a funny premise and the story moves along okay for the most part, but it's too long and the main character is just a douchebag through and through, with no redeeming qualities as a character. I mean, he's just so lame. I really thought this movie could have been way better if it focused on another character entirely - maybe the story from Ed's point of view would have been good, as he's actually a likable character and elicits a little bit of sympathy. Or from Peter Vincent's point of view, as he seems like he has more invested in all of this.


Charley is just a boring, awful little douche, and really just shows the limitations of so many of these kinds of films - focusing on the most boring cardboard cutout of a suburban white kid just to make it "relatable." We could have had a potentially interesting, funny flick, but what do we get?


Eugh. I get it, the point of the story is a kid who thinks his new neighbor is a vampire. Keep him in the story, sure; but at least do us the courtesy of having a better character be the main focus!

The Evil Ed stuff is funny, and there are some other clever bits, but it really does start to drag as it goes on and it should have been trimmed by at least twenty minutes if not more. It's obviously better than The Wicker Man remake which I mentioned earlier, but I really do think most of the fame tends to stem from the Evil Ed performance - it was the most memorable part of the movie. It's a fairly well made film though and I can see how it was popular back in the day. But I'll stick to Re-Animator for my gory laughs.

Images copyright of their original owners; I own none of them.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

David Cronenberg Classics VS Modern Horror: The Battle

Well, it's almost Halloween again, so that means I'm actually going to have to talk about horror movies at some point! Yes, I know, what a shocker. But enough about that. Let's talk about David Cronenberg.


If you don't know him, well, you'll want to after this – the man is famous now for making movies about Robert Pattinson riding around in limousines, but back in the day, he was famous for horror. Really fuckin' good horror, too. The kind of horror that was unique, creative, weird and trippy, full of social commentary, interesting characters, interesting visuals...man, they were just so goddamn good. What do we get now? Dime-a-dozen exorcist possession flicks, remakes and torture porn. It's just about enough to make you want to build a time machine and head back to that time to experience it all firsthand.

I mean really, where's the contest? In The Fly, Cronenberg wowed us with a tale of a man tampering with science and turning into a monster. There was also a subtext about aging and disease and even a bit near the end that tackled pregnancy in the face of disease. It was a powerful film and was actually about something. Through Jeff Goldblum's frenetic performance balanced against the horror of his on-screen co-stars, there's a real sense of tragedy and horror at what he's going through which mirrors real life decay, disease or just aging – as well as the terror of a man messing with science.


What is Dead Silence about? A fucking dummy makes dumb ghost stories happen while the worst detective in the world digs up puppet graves. Where's the social commentary?


Real horror doesn't just come from the director shoving something scary in your face and saying “boo.” There has to be some kind of story or concept that reflects something in reality – or else, what incentive is there to give a shit? Yes, to some degree horror movies can just be mindless entertainment, as any genre has a subset like that. But we've reached an oversaturating point when movies intended for that purpose fail at being entertaining.

In Videodrome, Cronenberg lays on the satire thick, weaving a tale of the modern day obsession with violence on TV and making it into a warped, psychedelic tale of a smarmy TV station exec who becomes embroiled in a strange otherworldly cult's conspiracy to take over the world. It's completely bizarre and insane, but you do get the point driven in – if with the subtlety of the nails hammered into Christ's hands.


What do we get in Sharknado? “LOL, bad movies are hilarious! Look how bad we can be! Isn't it totally ironic and crazy how bad we're being? But it's on purpose, so you can't criticize us at all!”


There's just no comparison here. In the old days, movies weren't afraid to be totally off-the-wall crazy to drive a point in, in the name of both artistry and entertainment. A film like Videodrome, despite being completely batshit, had a real direction to it and a point to what it was trying to say: modern TV is too gratuitous and violent. And it wasn't afraid of using the most over the top, grotesque imagery to get there, because that's what satire is supposed to be – going all the way back to A Modest Proposal, satire is about being as subtle as a jackhammer to the face. It's about being totally off the wall and ridiculous to drive home a point. (Well, yes, you can be subtle about it too. But that's not the kind I'm talking about here.)

Movies these days don't seem to get that on the whole – a lot of films these days are ashamed to be that way, as being over the top is seen as bad and not cool. So instead, we just get stuff that's ironically bad, removing itself from criticism by going “well, I meant to make something horrible.” Surprise, that's not how it works – you won't be remembered.

In Scanners, Cronenberg tells a surprisingly emotional and dark tale of the journey of a special psychic man (a “Scanner”) to help save the world from what he's told is an evil Scanner. I don't want to spoil too much of it for those of you who for some reason haven't seen it yet, but it's actually a very deceptive story about trusting in large powerful corporations (or whatever deity holds its influence over you) and about belonging to a group – nothing is as it seems. The film is a tortured epic and tells a story about corruption and lies.


One thing the film is great at is explaining its very complex and multi-faceted universe – as this is a science fiction tale about things we don't normally experience in real life, it's obviously necessary to have some explanation and exposition in there. But it's done tastefully. When this movie explains shit, it keeps those explanations short and lets you know the facts without being egregious about it. And you do care, because you want to see the main character succeed and you're interested in what the hell's going to happen next – so the explanations have more gravity. Going off that, you also have NO CLUE what's going to happen – it's not a predictable film and so you're actually sitting there wondering what's going to happen, and thus the exposition is important for that reason.

In The Conjuring, the exposition and explanation are there because the movie has no story. When the psychics Ed and Lorraine Warren are telling the characters what's going on, it's really just because the film had no other substance – there's no real emotional connection or depth to this story, no reason for the audience to care. It's just explaining and explaining and explaining, followed by jump scares, with a possession exorcism climax.


What am I supposed to be invested in there? The film's story – what scant little there is – has already been done a thousand times over, so you can't even fall back on the novelty of a unique idea to cover up for the lazy writing.

I don't even think Scanners is necessarily a perfect film – it's got some flaws. I don't think lead actor Stephen Lack is that great (certainly not good enough for the amount of screen time he has) and, as the movie goes on, I do find it gets a bit slow at times. However, its intrigue, message and overall journey from beginning to end are satisfying and interesting to watch. You at least got the sense of a powerful story being told overall. With The Conjuring, it's just empty – empty “go quiet followed by loud noise” jump scares, empty story clumsily trying to fill its own inadequacies with more exposition...there's just no imagination.

In The Brood, Cronenberg weaves a cautionary satiric tale of new age hippie medicine and healing practices, combining that with a very dark and surprisingly touching family story about a father trying to do what's best for his little girl, while also struggling with his wife who's gone crazy. Lead actor Art Hindle is just incredible in this, delivering one of my favorite lead horror actor performances. You get a real sense of his struggle and the weight on his shoulders. I especially like the scenes where he interacts with Susan Hogan's character, his daughter's teacher who he almost has a budding romance with – it's very tender, fragile and a little sad, and the emotions are complex.


The scares come from the shocking and brutal murders committed, apparently, by tiny gremlins which have a connection to the wife's therapy sessions at the new-age place. It's a strange concept, but the murders are grisly and the way the characters react to them is very honest, dark and tragic – it's just a great story.

What do we get in World War Z? Cardboard cutouts of characters re-enacting the same old zombie apocalypse you saw in a billion other movies, only with zero substance or connection to the characters. It's got to be a world record for making the zombie apocalypse more boring than sitting through your high school calculus class.


If you really like any of the movies I've been slagging here, well, that's your prerogative; I'm sure there can be arguments made for enjoying these films as there can be with anything. However, I just think something has to be said here.

Yes, some of what I've said could arguably be called elitist in this article, but is that a bad thing? Elitism is quality control. It's caring about what comes out of a medium you love and having opinions. It doesn't mean I look down on anyone for thinking differently than I do here, it just means I think horror could do well going back to some of the creativity of its earlier years with directors like Cronenberg at the helm. Make of this whole thing what you will; it's just one guy's rambling. And if you haven't seen any Cronenberg flicks yet...well, make it a priority to do so this Halloween.

Images copyright of their original owners; I own none of them.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Satan's Little Helper (2004)

Doing these reviews, you fake anger – you watch a stupid movie, then you take an exasperated tone and bitch about how ridiculous it was that the movie got made, et cetera – you guys know the deal, you know what I do. But every now and again a movie comes along that I don't even have to fake it for. Sometimes you're just sitting there seething with rage at every new scene and wishing death on the characters every time they utter a new insipid line of dialogue. Sometimes you just reach a boiling point and its name in the tumor developing in your brain is revealed as if in some Hellish vision – and it is called....Satan's Little Helper.

Director: Jeff Lieberman
Starring: Alexander Brickel, Katherine Winnick, Amanda Plummer

Co-written with Michelle.

This is a 2004 ass-fest full of horrible characters, horrible writing, horrible storylines...it's just a cauldron of everything wrong with the world. If you're wondering why horror these days is so formulaic and bland, well, you can thank the sheer unrepentant awfulness and tastelessness of this piece of garbage for jolting the mainstream studios awake like an electric shock to the nipples and going “HEY! You need to make money off of this and movies like Satan's Little Helper aren't helping!”

Well, as much as I'd love to continue stalling, I guess that doesn't work when you can already scroll down the page and read the rest anyway.

We start off with a little boy named Dougie, who is obsessed with a handheld video game in which you help the Devil wreak havoc on Earth.

This would only be a good game if Daniel Radcliffe was involved.

That's fucking unbelievable – the first thing we see in the film, and already you ask the audience for a Herculean jump in suspension of disbelief. Why would this game exist at all? In the United States of America, where you can be sentenced to prison time for posing for a dick-sucking picture with a statue of Christ? Where atheists are still viewed by the majority of the country as completely amoral, stink-bomb-throwing hooligans with no moral compasses? Where a prayer takes precedence over the National Anthem a lot of the time?

...and you're telling me a game where Satan helps you beat people up would be made in THAT climate?

...well, I just don't find that very likely.

But anyway, Dougie was clearly dropped on his head as a little boy as he then has a conversation with his mother, Amanda Plummer, about whether or not Satan is real and if Dougie can go find him on Halloween and hang out with him. Plummer, who I'm sure was stoned off her ass every second she was filming this shit, makes up some stuff about how Satan is evil and evil is everywhere. Personally I would have just said Satan is film studio executives, but hey, different parenting for different folks.

Then they go to meet Jenna, Dougie's sister, who is returning home from college for Halloween, because you know, Halloween is the type of holiday you normally go home from college for – and yes, apparently classes just give you time off to go do that. She brings her boyfriend with her, Kurt Cobain MK 2004:

It came from art school...

They go back home and start getting ready for Halloween. Dougie runs away and meets up with this guy, a serial killer in a Halloween mask who he sees propping up an actual dead body. Dougie, being a fucking retard, doesn't see anything wrong with this and instead asks if he can help this clearly psychotic killer, whom he mistakes, quite understandably, for Satan himself.

"Even I think you're an idiot here."

Of course the killer says yes, too, because why wouldn't you want some dumbass kid running around with you if you're trying to go on a mass-killing spree? I'm really just wondering here; what did this guy do the other 364 days of the year? Clearly Halloween was a real special time for him as he could be so lazy and just kill people in public, and no one would notice (because as the movie will soon show us, Halloween means people don't notice people being murdered in front of them). Did he just sit at home the other days of the year going “fuck! I got no ideas now that I can't just leave my dead victims out in public in the middle of the day! Oh well. Better just stay home and watch Mean Girls again.”

"I mean c'mon, who would actually fall for this? I'm just doing it to see how long it takes to get caught!"

If you're wondering what the fuck the rest of the family is doing while Dougie just wanders around town by himself (not bad parenting at all), well, good thing I'm here to tell you: Amanda Plummer is dressing her daughter up like a pirate wench, even though Jenna doesn't want to and the costume is even skimpier than what you see most actual prostitutes wearing.

"I forgot what boobs looked like."

I get it, Halloween means dressing up and being sexy – I just find it hilariously misguided that the mother is MAKING her daughter dress up this way. Kinda backwards! I mean the only thing the mother DOESN'T do is physically take her daughter out there and start filming her having sex with her Kurt Cobain boyfriend out there.

Dougie eventually returns home with “Satan” in tow, who he takes down to the house basement, where Satan cracks open an old wine bottle to...pour over his face for no reason, as clearly there's no mouth hole in that mask and you're really just wasting good wine.


Things get even more wretched as Dougie makes a plan with “Satan” to kill off Kurt Cobain boyfriend guy because Dougie is possessive of his sister, or some crap like that – apparently Dougie and Cobain-boyfriend are going to the costume store to get a costume and then “Satan” will jump out and kill the boyfriend. I guess the storyline here is that Dougie doesn’t think “Satan” is actually going to do anything serious, like he’s just playing around or something. Even that’s pretty flimsy though – was there nobody to tell this kid that hanging around with weird grown men in Halloween masks who don’t talk is a bad idea? Even three-year-olds could grasp that!

"It's just so obvious it hurts!"

So “Satan” knocks out the boyfriend and then goes home, where Jenna and Amanda Plummer both assume it’s the boyfriend in a mask and costume. This could maybe be plausible for a few seconds when they’re playing around in the living room together, but when Jenna takes “Satan” upstairs (still thinking it’s her boyfriend) to have sex with her? HOW DOES SHE NOT NOTICE IT ISN’T HIM?!

"I'm your girlfriend and should probably pick up the signs that your touch feels different and you're not acting like him, but I'm also a complete idiot!"

And I get it – the movie is trying to be funny with all of this. It’s obviously not asking us to take it seriously as a scary movie or some kind of drama; that much is clear. But it’s just so unfunny. If the script were written with any clever satire of horror movies, or actually funny moments, a story like this might work - but everything is just so fucking bad. It’s seriously incomprehensible how this thing ever got out of the editing room.

Because get this – nobody guesses that the guy in the Satan costume ISN’T Jenna’s Kurt Cobain-esque boyfriend for the next forty minutes of the film. Are you shitting me? Am I even in reality anymore?

No, clearly I’m not – because we have a scene next where the guy in the Satan costume tries to eat out Jenna – while still wearing the mask which has no mouth hole.

Another horrible scene - she constantly gets a scared look on her face when she suspects the guy in the mask might not be her boyfriend, but then as soon as he does stuff like this, she forgets about it and is suddenly super aroused and not suspicious at all. Either she's just as horny as a horned toad or...the movie just makes no sense.

Just...every fucking scene makes me hate myself in this movie. Every scene just goes lower and lower and...no, not “lower” like that. You perverts!

Then Dougie and “Satan” go out and buy a bunch of knives and hammers and ropes to kill more people with, which Dougie still thinks is just fun and games. Guys, we’ve gone far past the point of this kid being retarded, and into the new and terrifying realm of “this kid is actually some kind of subterranean Mole Person who has never had contact with human beings before the movie began.”

When “Satan” stabs a worker from the store right in front of Dougie, there’s still no reaction – he just thinks it’s cool. You little douche. I hate to be mean spirited, but I really was hoping this kid would die at this point – he’s just so awful. This kid is making me yearn for Rush Limbaugh speeches and reddit commenters talking about how the Jennifer Lawrence nude picture leaks really WERE her fault. That's how bad this kid really is!

"Coooooool...let's bomb an abortion clinic next!"

What’s that? Don’t believe me that he should die? Well, check out the next scene in which “Satan” goes on a shopping cart rampage through the parking lot and runs over a pregnant woman, a woman with a baby carriage and a blind man.


I just...do not have WORDS to describe how despicable that is, so instead I’ll just muse on the incredible coincidence that a pregnant woman, a woman with a baby carriage and a blind man were all walking in the same area right when that scene happened. Just one of those wondrous coincidences I guess!

Oh, are you not convinced this kid is the worst human being in cinema yet? How about the next scene where he watches “Satan” break into some old lady’s house and murder her, and still doesn’t care? Is THAT proof enough for you?!?

I hate this kid so much, I want to age him rapidly to the age of 35, then force him to rewatch all of the awful things he helped do in this movie. Over and over again.

Back at home, because we can’t have anything likable in this movie at all, Jenna complains because her boyfriend and Dougie haven’t come back and it’s been several hours. Rather than be worried about silly things like their safety or the fact that it’s not normal for people to disappear for several hours after just going around the corner to the store, she’s worried that her boyfriend is cheating on her.

"How dare you make me think I was getting cheated on!"

Really. THAT’S your big worry? Why not focus on the REAL problems like “what kind of nail polish should I wear?” or “what should I buy my parents for Christmas?” Geez, get some perspective!

Meanwhile, “Satan” gets arrested by the cops, but apparently, off screen, he kills them all, because this movie secretly wanted to be a Terminator sequel. And because this is a small island town, apparently that also means the entire town is now without a police force and complete anarchy will reign, as highlighted by this scene where “Satan” high-fives some idiot who calls him “Nigga.”


Hmm, let me check – yup, I do think my life span went down a few years just watching that short two-second scene. Thanks, movie! I didn't want to live that long anyway.

So “Satan” comes back and acts weird, prompting Jenna to think SOMETHING isn't quite right about her boyfriend who hasn't spoken a word or taken off his mask to prove it's actually him! Really?!?! Is that your brilliant fucking conclusion? You truly are the next Einstein. But it isn't until “Satan” kills their father that Dougie and Jenna truly see it isn't really her boyfriend and IS actually just some murdering psycho! Oh man – nothing gets past you guys.

"I just can't believe something bad happened after we didn't notice a guy in a mask who was obviously a killer, was killing people!"

Then “Satan” kidnaps the mother, ties her up with tape and forces her to go to this party, where of course nobody realizes she's being kidnapped and just assumes the guy in the Satan mask is her husband.

"WOAH! What good costumes! We're going to choose to ignore the fact that you look scared as shit and just assume it's logical that someone would choose to dress up as Chiquita Banana wrapped in cellophane as a Halloween costume! And that guy with you who we don't see his face and he never speaks a word, and has to hold you to keep you from trying to run? I'm sure that's not suspicious at all! Let's not even bother checking!"

Because like I said – Halloween is really just an excuse for psychopaths to get away with murder, and everyone in this world is so dumb they might as well just be a colony of lemmings, damned to extinction on their island which they were probably exiled to because of their stupidity – they're certainly not equipped to survive in the world anyway. I mean they didn't even notice when two people dropped on the floor dead from poisoned punch – which, by the way, is what the killer did in the movie's rolls of fat in the last 10 minutes.

"Woah! Such realistic Halloween death effects! Great costumes, guys! We'll just leave you on the floor to lie motionless like you're actually dead, because it's Halloween and we can't tell the difference!"

What's this killer's plan again? Either he's just the MacGyver of serial killers, or he's got the attention span of a speck of dust. “Muwahaha, time to kill random people and pose them like Halloween props...no, wait, time to follow a little boy around and do whatever he says...no, wait, now it's time to kill a bunch of people at a costume party I didn't know was happening until fifteen minutes ago! I'M NOT RANDOM AT ALL!”

The boyfriend and Jenna finally meet up again and kill who they think is the killer, but it's actually just the boyfriend's dad, which was a plot element explained while we were being lobotomized by the other scenes.

Then, apparently, the killer shows up again wearing a Jesus costume. I don't know why, but it does make something very clear to me that I wasn't sure about before: God really is dead.


He somehow kills the boyfriend, then does the old “disguise the boyfriend in the Jesus costume so they shoot and stab HIM instead of the real killer” trick, which doesn't make me at all want to kill myself. Oh wait yes it does. My bad.


The movie ends with the real killer coming back with this incredible disguise and presumably slaughtering the entire family, which is as close to a happy ending as we're liable to get.

I don't know whether to be angry that Dougie couldn't tell that was a mask and that it was the killer, baffled that the killer found a police officer costume so fast or relieved that the movie is over and these miserable, miserable characters died. So many complex emotions!

Of course, the only actual happy ending there could be to THIS film would be the director just appearing on screen and apologizing profusely for the whole thing, then erasing our memories of it via Men in Black thingamajiggies. But as is, this is pretty much the worst of humanity.


I mean it – this whole thing was about as funny for me as watching a concentration camp video. I just don't get it; what was supposed to be funny about this? The fact that it was doing traditional horror tropes badly on purpose? Well, congratulations – do you want a medal for that? It doesn't take effort to make a fucking shitty movie like this. It DOES take effort to put actual jokes or satire into your script that have a point and actually SAY something, which is the point of any satire – not just to be bad for the sake of being bad. Which this movie does not do.

It's just complete shit – they regurgitate a couple really old cliches, throw in the most unlikably stupid, asinine characters you've ever seen and beat the whole thing into your skull with a near two-hour runtime until you're too dumb to think about anything, and then wallah, the movie has succeeded! It's seriously beyond comprehension until you actually see it yourself. But don't subject yourself to this. Save your precious brain cells! This movie deserves to be burned in a garbage can.

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