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RATED: Not Rated
STUDIO: Creepersin Films
RUNNING TIME: 70 minutes
• “Hostel Takeover” featurette
• “Nightmare Jobs” featurette
• “Late Shift” original short
• Director commentary
The Office meets American Psycho minus the talent, wit, charm and anything resembling competence.
Creep Creepersin (director), Elina Madison, Charlie Vaughn, Chandler Maness, Robbyn Leigh, Tabitha Taylor, Derrek Du Chesne, Sunny Doench, Stephanie Jackson, Dudley Beene and Elissa Dowling
The economy is tough out there, and if anybody knows it, it’s office manager Brandi Babcock. Corporate wants her to fire two people by the end of the day. Instead of choosing by herself, she will base her decision on merit. She will fire the two workers with the lowest numbers by the end of the day. Someone in the office doesn’t like their chances. They hope that if other workers “disappear” no firing will take place. Or will it?
When it comes to watching no-budget movies that are shot on video, you always have to keep in mind the people who are making the film. They are almost always hardcore fans (especially horror filmmakers) with nothing but goodwill in their heart and a desire to add to a medium they truly love. But, passion is never an excuse for bad product. Such is the case with Corporate Cutthroat Massacre. It’s a poorly made, boring as paint chips excuse for seventy minutes of life I’ll never be able to recapture.
The premise sounds like something you could do for little-to-no money and make something interesting out of: A group of office wage slaves are forced to work late under the threat of their tyrannical boss giving them the pink slip. One by one, they start getting knocked off. There’s plenty there for a decent horror flick. Throw in a few worthwhile kills and some shameless T&A and you can at least satisfy your lowest common denominator of fan. But director Creep Creepersin (I’m certain that’s what his parents christened him) spoils every opportunity given to him and manages to make one of the most interminable movie experiences I’ve had to endure. And it’s only seventy minutes! It certainly feels a hell of a lot longer.
The movie should be called The Bloodless Off-Screen Massacre That Ineptly Tries to Clone The Office. None of the kills are shown on-screen and we don’t even see blood or a corpse until there’s only 15 minutes left to the movie. This is a cardinal sin for a “horror” movie. I put horror in quotation marks because it’s attempting to be more of a comedy by directly ripping off The Office. The cast of characters are mostly blatant copies of characters from the hit TV show. There’s a goofy human resources guy, a soon-to-be married couple, and even a girl that drinks while on the job. But the movie isn’t parodying the show, just shamelessly stealing its archetypes. And it’s not like most of the characters are given any actual depth. The only one who gets some kind of motivation is the bitch of a boss (Elina Madison), but she’s so one-note that it never amounts to anything remotely substantial. Not to mention that everyone has community theater levels of acting prowess. A couple actors actually stumble over their lines on camera. It’s slipshod stuff we’re dealing with here.
But the technical aspects of the film are what drive it into pure unwatchable territory. There isn’t even an attempt to frame most of the shots in the movie. The camera zooms in and out like a parent filming their kid’s third birthday party. The music soundtrack sounds like it was cut together using a Slap Chop. And the editing. Oh Jesus tap-dancing monkey Christ, the editing. There are so many quick cuts to black that I prayed for each one to be the signal that the movie was over. There are also so many random shots of office furniture and accessories that had to be filler for the run time. When you find out the movie is expanded from a short film (using some of the same actors and footage), this theory holds a lot of water.
To be completely honest, my eyelids were having a tough time staying open during this movie, and I was watching it at 11:30 in the morning. By the time the ending was approaching, I was ready to take a well-deserved nap. And then the ending happened. I don’t care about spoiling this because it’s one of those “twists” that you see time and time again in these kinds of lower grade flicks and it never works. In this case, it actually woke me up and made me shout, “Come on, really?” out loud to myself. So, there’s a new janitor that has just been hired and he’s quite the oddball. And we see him snatching the employees away. So he’s our murderer, right? He’s even sporting a sledgehammer on the back of the DVD case. Well, when the last person left alive is the bitchy boss and she’s crawling away from the sledgehammer-swinging custodian, she’s suddenly the one wielding the hammer and bringing it down on the janitor. It was the boss all along! Then we get the requisite flashback showing how it was her doing all the things we saw the janitor doing, even if they make absolutely no sense. It’s a trite ending to a movie that is the equivalent of watching a pot of water boil on a stove that isn’t turned on.
With the exception of a scene where an employee is fired for bringing the boss a salad with croutons in it, there isn’t anything at all to recommend in Corporate Cutthroat Massacre. It’s almost an experiment in creating cinematic drudgery. Haphazardly slapped together and doing absolutely nothing to make it stand out in the sea of do-it-yourself horror films, you’re way better off watching something like Severance rather than this uninspired sleep inducer.
This is a shot-on-DV movie, so the picture quality is what you’d expect from a camcorder circa 2009. There is a commentary with the director and one of the other actors (nothing exciting, but they seem like decent enough folks), the original short the movie was based on (just as bad but only 1/5 as long!), a featurette talking to some of the people involved with making the movie about how it came to be, and another featurette with the same people talking about some of the worst jobs they’ve ever had. Oddly, they don’t mention making this movie as one of them.
Out of a Possible 5 Stars