Sunday, November 07, 2004

Last Movie Blog on the Left

Practicing what I preach has always been difficult for me, so I've spent the better part of the week just relaxing and watching movies instead of mobilizing the Democratic party or writing. I promise I will get to that eventually, but first, I'm going to watch Slashers one more time. Slashers is my new favorite horror movie. It's an independent release from Canadian filmaker Maurice Devereaux, and it is worth the three years it took him to make. His original concept behind making this movie was to have one long camera shot, that way it felt like one long scene instead of the usual cut every few seconds. What better way to do that than a live game show? How about a Japanese game show with serial killers? I kid you not, Japanese game show where you get big bucks to live through the taping. He chose Japanese reality-type shows because they are usually on the cutting edge of television, so they would be doing it first. It also didn't hurt the effect that it was shot in hi-def video, just like Japanese reality shows. The plot is fairly simple, six American contestants are chosen, each seemingly one-dimesional caricatures, to be on the first live broadcast in North America of the world's hottest new show. The pot is $12 million, plus $2 million for each of the "slashers" they can kill. They are up against newcomer "Preacherman", everyone's favorite hick "Chainsaw Charlie" and the shows highest ranked killer "Dr. Ripper." We follow the six contestants through a well-done set (a paintball course by day) as Hideo, the voyeuristic cameraman. Six minutes in, the lead character Megan is topless because the sadistic doctor has done so to mock her and her political views. She came on the show, not for money, but to prove how horrible executing people for ratings is. As the movie progresses, each character begins to change. Each grows until the tough guy marine is helping the hapless Megan, the tough-guy bouncer sacrifices himself to save the others on the aptly named "Bridge of Death." The Butters-like (my friend Jason called that one) Michael turns out to be a sadistic serial killer himself, and so on and so forth. Using non-union actors on shoestring budget, Devereaux really got the job done. For only $150,000 he got the job done in a month and a half. It makes you wonder why directors like this get so little for such great original concepts while millions are thrown away just so we can see Jessica beals tits in a wet tank top (granted, they are nice tits) in a crappy remake of the classic Texas Chainsaw Massacre. It's really sickening. I also want to point out how great a job Claudia did playing the shows subtly bitchy host, Miho Taguchi. Some moments you want to slap her, others, you want to spank her. She also sang the really hypnotic and catchy theme song. The song's can't-get-it-out-of-my-headedness is truly amazing. The lyrics were written in English then translated into Japanese for her to sing. This movie is well worth more than just a look. Jason and I have decided that is our new Halloween movie. If I had to give it a rating (which I suppose I have to) 8 out of 10 hearts. If Devereaux had more to time and money, he could have fully realized his vision. I also want to make a quick note that I have recently purchased the DVD version of Jason Goes to Hell. I watched it twice tonight (once with the commentary) and I might throw down a review this weekend. You'll just have to stay tuned and see.


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