Saturday, June 16, 2012

The Slaughter (2006)

It's harder to do what I like to call "horror fluff" than it looks. Horror fluff, for lack of a better phrase, is a horror movie that doesn't tax your braincells, has a dumb sense of humor, and wants nothing more than to entertain you with the three B's-boobs, blood and (sometimes) beasts. "Slaughter Night" from director Jay Lee (who went on to direct "Zombie Strippers") almost gets it right, but falls short.

The premise deals with a ritual that's supposed to awaken a dark goddess that will bring forth Armageddon. Or something like that. Dana (Jessica Custudio) and her wannabe Revolutionary brother Iggy (Zak Kilberg) and some other folks are there to clean up a house in which these Rituals took place, and what do ya know, they engage in what Gob Bluth would call "a huge mistake" and awaken a demon that will could finish things up. Cue zombies, blood and dumb jokes.

The problem with "The Slaughter" is that it almost feels afraid to commit to it's own stupidity. It's got female nudity, zombies, gore, monsters and occult rituals, and it never takes itself too seriously. Hell, most of the performances are okay and Tom Savini show's up for a cameo as a sheriff. It's clear that this has all the ingredients to be some entertaining horror fluff ala "Night of the Demons" and "Chopping Mall." However, it ends up defusing itself?

How? For starters, the out of place social commentary. Now, I hate the previous administration as much as everyone else does, but random jokes like "This is the worst thing since the Bush administration" doesn't really fit the narrative of the film, nor does it's staunchly anti-Republican stance on about everything-and this is coming from somebody whose far from a Republican. Speaking of which, the character of Iggy was annoying as hell. He reminded me of every obnoxious college student I knew of that thought they had the whole world figured out and wore a Che Guevara shirt without a hint of irony (Guevara would have hated such a thing.) Finally, there's some of the second act and the whole the third act, in which everything just falls apart. Here, the humor goes from dumb but tolerable to just plain awful, with jokes and one liners that would make the fat guy from "Night of the Demons" cringe, and a conclusion that feels rushed.

It's a shame too, because as I said, it almost get's it right. With a bit more work on the script, this could have been a decent little time waster. Instead, it's a movie that misses the ball by *that* much.

Rating: 5/10

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