28 October 2009

6WH: October 28th

Slaughter (2009) directed by Stewart Hopewell
This film's big trick is that it teases the audience with the idea that a deranged farmer is killing his daughter Lola's one-night stands, when it's actually Lola doing the murdering. That's fine. It's just that Lola's evil side comes absolutely out of nowhere. I think actress Lucy Holt should've added some quirks to her portrayal of Lola. Just a few minor indications that Lola was not quite right in the head would've helped in the transition from the first 2/3rds of the movie to the final 1/3rd. As it stands, she's pretty much the Krusty the Clown doll from that Simpsons Halloween episode: a switch on her back gets flipped in the middle of the movie from good to evil. The movie attempts to flashback and explain what Lola's ultimate evil plan was, but it doesn't really make much sense when you think about it. Really, everything about the movie comes across as ham-handed and poorly thought out. (4/10)

Du saram-yida (2007) directed by Ki-hwan Oh

Voices, like every other East Asian horror movie I've seen lately, just doesn't work for me. I suspect there's a cultural difference at play here. Folks on that side of the Pacific Ocean seem to find ghosts and curses supremely scary subjects. I can't say that I do. I suppose Poltergeist was effective... when I was a kid.

In this one, there's a curse going around that causes people to snap and kill people their own family members or friends. The main character has to survive attacks from her schoolmates, mom and boyfriend before she finally succumbs to the curse herself. The curse, by the way, is personified as a creepy-looking kid. I don't think we're supposed to realize that the main character is the only one who can see and talk to him until the end, but it was pretty obvious to me he was a Tyler Durden right away. The curse is also sometimes shown as a burned-up pair of hands or a face popping into the main characters field of the view suddenly. These shots seem to exist simply to add some traditional horror movie shocks to the film, as they don't appear to have anything to do with anything.

All that aside, the movie is massively boring. Once we learn the curse means you can't trust anyone, it becomes obvious that everyone the main character encounters is going to try to kill her. There's not much tension in a horror film when you know what's coming. (5/10)

And that gets me caught up with three years of Horrorfest movies. Horrorfest III was an improvement over the previous two years. This time around, there were three films -- one more than usual -- that I found decent. The Br√łken, The Butterfly Effect 3: Revelations and From Within were all worth watching. Hey, at this rate, fully half of Horrorfest V will be enjoyable!