Tuesday, September 28, 2010

#38-Deadgirl (2008)


It seems like the only way to be a critical success in the horror-community these days, you must either be apart of an established franchise, or and indie darling with no studio ties. Deadgirl falls into the latter category, and was screened with mixed-to-positive results at many respected festivals. The film is a first for directors Marcel Sarmiento and Gadi Harel, and is written by Trent Haaga a man famous for his low-budget horror writing, directing and acting. Awesome. Two new directors, and a man known for low budget work. Aren't we in for a treat.

The film also stirred up a little controversy for it's plot. It revolves around two young boys who skip school one day, and go to a deserted warehouse (of course). Inside they find a few rabid dogs, along with the "ultimate prize". That being a zombified woman they find taped to an operating table naked. Instead of doing the morally correct thing and taking her to a hospital or calling the police, the two boys who can't get a girlfriend decide to leave her there and continually rape her for their own pleasure. After mercilessly trying to kill the girl three times, they discover she is immortal.

"You're the man Johnny"

Now, I can deal with controversial, disgusting, raw, and all together just wrong material. I'm fine with it. I can deal, and I find it interesting how the directors deal with such sensitive ideas. However, the creators of Deadgirl did not take that into account. The screenplay is incredibly explotative, and annoyingly so. Most horror screenplays are sexually and violently explotative, but this one takes it one-step further, and on purpose. They know the material is sick and disgusting, and so they try to make it more sick and disgusting, not for artistic or idealogical reasons, but just to watch you squirm.

Not only is the film weak on and terrible on a mental level, but the film isn't well made techincally. Nearly the entire film takes place in a dark grey warehouse, with many forward facing shots. The music, while interesting , does not fit the film. It sounds exactly like the soundtrack from Donnie Darko, and in fact I wouldn't be surprised if it was. The two actors who play the teenage boys are obviously not in their teens, and could range anywhere from 25 to 30. They weren't very good actors as well, bad casting, and bad acting are a terrible mix. And I tell you, it is terrible.

I respect the fact that the filmmakers tried to make something daring and dangerous. But in the end they failed. It is shallow, rude, and terribly made. The whole thing feels like an amatuer hodge-podge of some ten year old who had just watched Friday The 13th and said: "Hey, I could do that!" And they could, but that doesn't mean that they are going to do it good.

I Give Deadgirl A:

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