MAY 12, 2007


When I was in high school, there was this sort of school journal called The "Lyceum". It was 99% bad "goth" poetry; nonsense like "Darkness. I sit alone. In the. Darkness." in oddly disjointed spacing.

(The other 1% was table of contents.)

I used to love mocking it, and I was reminded of that while watching Heartstopper. Because every single line the serial killer guy speaks sounds like it was taken from that Lyceum rag. Throughout the film he just spews the most inane and cliched nonsense, such as "The only great pain in this life is having to live it." He also says all of this crap in a low pitched, "evil" voice that only gets more and more aggravating as the film goes on. The closest thing he ever gets to something worth repeating (strictly for mockery purposes) is "When I'm inside you, I will make you Hell's slut!", whatever the fuck that means.

I never heard of this movie until a few days ago, when it was reviewed in Rue Morgue (the best monthly horror magazine by far, by the way). They didn't like it, but they described it as a ripoff of Shocker and Halloween II, which alone piqued my interest. I figured it would be an OK enough time killer, besides it had Robert Englund and was directed by Bob Keen, who is a fantastic makeup guy (he designed Pinhead's makeup).

But much like his colleague John Carl Buechler, he apparently cannot direct worth a shit. This is one of the most thoroughly boring and derivative films I have seen in ages. At no point does anything going on serve to keep viewer interest, and by the halfway point I was seriously considering just watching something else for today and forgetting I ever Netflixed the damn thing. Instead I took a quick nap. Later I discovered I missed absolutely nothing in the 10 minutes I was asleep. Because, for whatever reason, the movie decides to give up on itself about halfway through. Up until that point, it's bad, but it's moving along OK enough, with a kill every few minutes (I will say there is certainly enough blood in this for idiot gorehounds who judge a movie's merit simply on how much blood they see). But the last 40 minutes consist of almost nothing but our uninteresting leads sitting in a room more or less waiting to die. And then a tornado comes along and sweeps the bad guy away. Whatever.

Robert Englund proves himself to be smarter than I am, exiting the film after the first act. Good for him. Which leaves us stuck with 2 unlikeable women (a bitter nurse and our heroine, who tried to kill herself because she fucked like 3 other girls' boyfriends. Also she's clearly like 25 playing 17) and a gangbanger guy with a Pac-man shirt.

Did anyone involved with the creative process of this film actually WANT an audience to enjoy it? Everything about it reeks of grade A halfassery. In the most extreme example, the girl is shooting the serial killer over and over, and then pauses to say "And this is for my mother!", and then proceeds to shoot him below his right buttock. Not his head, or his heart, or somewhere MEANINGFUL, no. In the fleshy part below his ass. Christ. It seems like they are almost daring you to bother watching the whole movie. Hilariously, on the lone DVD extra, Englund likens the film to a stew made out of elements from other movies. He neglects to mention all of those other movies are actually worth my goddamn time.

This is the type of movie that makes me wish I had decided to, I dunno, read a new Hardy Boys book every day of the year.

What say you?

1 comment:

  1. The fact your high school literary journal was called "Lyceum" makes me think that Methuen is an even odder place that I figured


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