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Frayed (I) (2007)
It took five writers to rip off ********!!!!! (Major Spoilers ahead!)
14 November 2009
Warning: Spoilers
I was really looking forward to this movie. I LOVE low-budget horror movies, especially when they're done well. I even appreciate low-brow horror movies that pay some kind of tribute or homage to other past films of their ilk. But after watching this, I'm just baffled how ANYONE could like this! I never take the time out to write reviews here on IMDb because I think--since everyone has different tastes--why not everyone just see it for themselves and make their own decisions? Support low-budget film-making, that's my motto. But this movie is just a travesty! I mean, come on! Did it REALLY take five screenwriters to write a movie that's deepest moments of character development are made up of farts and vagina jokes? Look, people...I DON'T buy daddy was a child molester--NOTHING in the film earlier indicates that such was ever the case. You can't just force it down our throats at the last second to twist the plot further. And worst of all, the ending may SEEM clever to those who aren't aware, but any educated genre vet will know that the twist in this film is BLATANTLY and SHAMELESSLY ripped off of Alexandre Aja's superior French masterpiece "High Tension." And once again, can I just reiterate it supposedly took five screenwriters to write this???? Seriously, filmmakers. There's still so many wonderful ideas to be had, even in this well-trodden sub-genre. Don't steal an idea and call it your own. What a convoluted mess. ALMOST as terrible as Rob Zombie's remake of "Halloween." Man, I never thought I'd say that. Sad.
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Mirage (1990)
Highly underrated, well-done little slasher gem...
7 February 2006
This movie, which starts out with a interesting opening of two hot blondes getting it on in the back of a driver-less, moving vehicle, has quite the quirky little personality to boot. The cast of seven (although one girl doesn't hang around for the bodycount, which is unfortunate because the death toll is already so small as is) are all super-hot, as our story centers around teens partying way out in the desert (an odd but effective choice of setting), who are hunted down by a creepy man in black gloves and jeans who drives a black truck. It predates many of the vehicle-inspired slashers to date ("The Trip", "Joy Ride", "Jeepers Creepers") where the killer's vehicle itself becomes an evil antagonist. The killer himself is quite creepy, and we find solace in the extremely likable heroine in Jennifer McAllister (look at the interesting symbolic contrast of the evil killer in all black, while our benevolent heroine sports all white attire, as scanty and stonewashed as it may be). Director Bill Crain does some really great things with his camera, some neat tricks on screen, and the cast tries their absolute best. There's enough gore in the low bodycount to please the gore fans, and enough T&A from a couple of the girls to please T&A fans. Overall, this flick is highly underrated and widely sought out in the slasher movie world as it's proved quite rare to find on video. Highly recommended.
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The Trip (I) (2003)
Slasher on Wheels...
5 October 2005
Great independent horror effort from an unknown director/writer and surprisingly good acting from an unknown cast. This flick is a cross between "Joy Ride" and "I Know What You Did Last Summer", about a group of college kids going out to party in the desert. They accidentally run over some crosses on the side of the road, and suddenly find themselves being hunted down, one by one, by someone in a large, nasty old beat-up truck. First-time director Cross does an amazingly good job for such a difficult on-road concept, and I could only imagine what they had for a budget. The picture is crisp, and the characters are conventional, likable and fun. The storyline is a tad unoriginal. At one point, pictures on a barn wall are directly a steal from "IKWYDLS". I can't much say it ripped off "Joy Ride", however, as it's debatable that "Joy Ride" and "Jeepers Creepers" ripped off movies like "Duel" and the rare lost slasher "Mirage" from 1990. Not sure why this didn't get a wider DVD release (I thought I was going to have to search forever on ebay, like I did with "Mirage"), but instead found it available on Deep Discount DVD for six bucks! Well worth the buy...loads of fun.
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One of Canada's highly underrated gems.....
17 July 2002
"American Nightmare" is one of the better eighties slashers out there, featuring a funny, enjoyable cast, good suspense, and a fun, if not predictable take on the generic stalk-and-slash scenario. After the disappearance of a young girl (played by a young Alexandra Paul), the girl's brother (Day) comes to town looking for her, only to find out she was a dancer and hooker at a strip club. With the aid of his sister's roommate and co-worker (Staley), they begin the search for his sister. Meanwhile, the beret-wearing, razor-toting man who did in the sister begins stalking the other girls she worked with, one by one. A real sense of sympathy is felt for the unfortunate victims, who are good-hearted characters, regardless of their poverty or unfortunate lifestyle. The rich people in the movie are the loathsome characters. Slasher movie veteran Lenore Zann is quite likeable as the lovely 'Tina', and has a great chase sequence with the killer, while Aubrey supports comic relief as the hilarious wise-cracking transvestite 'Dolly'....great movie...check it out!
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