Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Actors: Danica McKellar, William Forsythe, Sean Kanan, Lochlyn Munro, Tony Burton
Genres: Horror, Science Fiction & Fantasy
Reality filmmaking can be murder. Just ask Vincent King (Sean Kanan)and his wife Mary Shelley (Juliet Landau),two passionate horror fans determined to create the ultimate slasher movie with the unwitting help of a cast to ... more »
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Member Movie Reviews
Chad B. (abrnt1) from CABERY, IL
Reviewed on 3/8/2012...
I wanted to enjoy this film, but upon watching it found myself hating every moment of it. This is the type of movie that goes out of it's way to cater to horror fans through pointless, uninspired & unfunny homages to other films. There isn't an original moment in this entire movie. William Forsythe slums his way through a part that makes no sense whatsoever.
Decent straight to video horror movie
MattW | Seattle, WA USA | 11/24/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Wholly derivative but somewhat effective horror thriller. Students visiting a secluded island to do field research find themselves the subject of a madman's obsession with movies. Considering the budgetary constraints the film is technically well done, the score fine, and the special effects mostly above par. Gore hounds will be pleased with the buckets of blood and a few unexpected twists and mild chuckles elevate what might have otherwise been a ho-hum affair. Who will live, who will die? Does it really matter? Recommended to horror affecianados."
Behind the Screams
Mark Eremite | Seoul, South Korea | 02/10/2008
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Making a horror movie is tricky, thankless business. The older you get, the harder it is to find a truly scary film. Maybe this is just a function of age; watch a movie at the age of thirty that scared the bejeezus out of you at age thirteen, and you may find yourself wondering what the teenage you was thinking. Maybe, also, it's simply a matter of unoriginal and uncreative filmmaking. Horror movies stand almost no chance at all of winning any kind of serious awards or acclaim, so their aspirations are limited, and most of the time they try to bank on the things that have worked before, and over and over again. It's a safe bet to say that the bulk of horror writers/directors are no longer interested in actually trying to frighten their smirking audiences. Instead, the genre has devolved into two basic factions: gross-out movies (see the Saw trilogy or either of the Hostels) where all of the creative energy is focused on finding new and interesting ways to slaughter peoiple, or movies that run on pure snark.
Behind the Mask - The Rise of Leslie Vernon and HACK! are NOT scary movies, nor were they meant to be. If you have any doubts about this, they are dispelled from the first frames of both films. Both flicks were written and produced in the same spirit of cheeky playfulness, and both of them work in direct proportion to the number of horror movie references the viewer is able to catch. These are not horror films; they are homages.
BEHIND THE MASK is the smarter of the two, which also means it's the talkier one. Capitalizing on the supernatural serial killer subset of horror films, BEHIND THE MASK seeks to show the genesis of a new killer: Leslie Vernon. Jason, Freddy, Michael -- the movie demythologizes the dark, demonic roots of these unstoppable murderers by analyzing in detail just what it takes to become one of them. Leslie, in the midst of his training in terror, has agreed to allow a documentary film crew follow him around as he plans and schemes his reign of blood. With the help of a mentor (a nicely underplayed Scott Wilson), Leslie sets in motion all of the tried and true totems of any good horror movie: the target virgin, the Ahab (who, in this case, is a straight-faced Robert Englund), the drunken frat boys. He even expounds on all the ways "invincible" killers manage to stay alive, keep their quarry in line, and (seemingly) be in two places at once.
It's a remarkably smart film (my favorite is the deleted scene where Leslie proves that he can, like all hellish fiends, catch up to someone in a foot race without ever actually running). The film mostly has the faded, grainy quality of the documentary camera, but when Leslie is about to accomplish another horror movie cliche, it changes to the sharp, pre-planned film shots of your average scary movie. It's a trade-off that's both rewarding and funny; after successfully navigating through another of creepdom's old chestnuts, Leslie grins and dances and jabbers his excitement to the documentarian. Not the behavior you imagine from a supernatural serial killer, but these are his off-hours.
The film is not without its flaws. It tries to be a little too smart, and stumbles over its own set-up. The film crew that's following Leslie begins to feel compunctions about documenting the murder of innocent teens and librarians, and they start getting involved in the action. This turn of events throws back at the audience the concessions they've already been asked to make, but it also gives the movie a chance to really explore the outer limits of its truisms. It takes a sharp eye to catch 100% of what BEHIND THE MASK is doing, and some might not think it's worth the effort. Still, it's at least as clever as any other horror film you might find out there, even if it's not as scary.
BEHIND THE MASK and HACK! are both homages, but HACK! is more openly satirical. It doesn't go whole hog with the parody until the last fifteen minutes, when the script's self-deprecation becomes equally self-congratulatory, but it doesn't take a viewer of much discernment to see the gears at work in the opening scenes. The dialogue and acting are so incredibly awful, they're funny in a way that must be intentional. And, again, audiences educated in horror movie lore should catch dozens and dozens of filmic references, some of them overt, some of them less so. It's basically what you would get if the makers of The Simpsons sat down to write a scary movie.
That comparison isn't an accident. A group of inanely stereotypical college students travels to a secluded island as part of some ludicrously vague field trip. Among the island's inhabitants is a Scottish groundskeeper named Willy (played perfectly by William Forsythe). Also on the island: a young couple who are crazy about horror films. The annoying students trade some of the cheesiest banter in movie history, take part in a few gratuitously nude scenes, and get dispatched in gory but decidedly unscary moments. The characters don't hesitate to announce (over and over) that they feel like they're living in a cliched horror movie.
The only real problem with HACK! is that it works so hard to be cheesy and stupid that it ends up being legitimately cheesy and stupid. The denoument is the smartest and cleverest thing about the film, when the dialogue gets some punch and when the reflective veneer of the script shines its brightest, but before this you must endure some of the lamest scenes ever committed to horror-film. True, the scenes are self-consciously lame, but that doesn't make them any less of a chore to watch. There's only so many times an audience can roll its eyes before its eyes get tired of rolling.
I applaud the effort, though. Much like BEHIND THE MASK, HACK! turns its final screws during the credits, and provides at least enough giggles to partially make up for the lack of screams the genre as a whole has failed to create in recent years. At the very least, both films give due credit to the fans they honor. Horror movies may have gotten pretty stupid in recent years, both flicks seem to say, but that doesn't mean the audiences have, too."
LeviDevi "Bubman" | Frankfort, KY USA | 01/30/2008
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I was very surprised by this one. It begins with your standard horror/slasher setup: group of college kids--and this group contains every cliche` you can think of--leaves to go do extra credit on an island out in the middle of nowhere, things begin to happen, and you'd think "here we are again"--AND you'd be WRONG!
I don't agree that the movie will have you "guessing until the end" (lord, if you can't figure out who's offing the kids, you need to turn in your horror membership card!), but I did enjoy the ending because...well, see for yourself! I think the title for this movie is very appropriate.
The movie's running time is 100 minutes. It is rated R for some nudity and campy blood and violence. You know; you're STANDARD slasher movie! It is also crammed full of named actors appearing in cameos. I almost didn't recognize William Forsythe and Kane Hodder (former Jason Vorhees AND Victor Crowley of "Hatchet" fame) doesn't even receive a mention. Lots of fun. I recommend it."