STUDIO: Planetworks
MSRP: $14.95
RATED: Not Rated
RUNNING TIME: 85 minutes
Behind the Scenes
Deleted Scenes
Gag Reel

The Pitch

“I have a script where kids go into the woods. If only, I could work out what happens next, we could strike gold with this one. Gold, I tell ya!”

“Let’s Celebrate, Brah!”

The Humans

Leah Rudick, Carly Goodspeed, Andrew Waffenschmidt, Director: Michael Hall

The Nutshell

Scott (Andrew Waffenschmidt, which is German for Andy Whats-his-name)  and Casey (Leah Rudick) and friends all go to the woods, yadda yadda, they get dead.

At some point, being a Goonie is less a badge of honor and more a type of sadness.

Okay, there’s more to it than that. Let’s start over, beginning with the fact that the snarky title of this feature is already 25% incorrect insofar as there are no kids to be seen here (probably a good thing, considering all the sex and drugs). These kids, either by nature or nurture (or poor lighting), appear to be in their early thirties, or perhaps late twenties, if you are feeling charitable, and you will not be feeling charitable by the end of the wiffle-ball montage. Yes, there is a wiffle-ball montage.


From left: Daughter (29), Son (33), and mother (41)

The… ahem… kids go to Uncle Bill’s cabin. Bill smokes a joint and leaves (he must have read the script! zing!). Unchaperoned, the… ahem… kids, attempt to sex each other up with varying results, and are picked off by the killer with predictable success. In a story thread that leads to nowhere at all, someone reads a book that may or may not be the story that the characters are living.

[SPOILER ALERT… if you didn’t see the cover of the DVD, or the back cover, or watch the first 30 seconds of the movie, or the top of this page] The killer wears a gas mask and trench coat because “Hey, I found a gas mask and trench coat!” said someone at a thrift shop. It is never explained, means nothing and it is lit too starkly to be terribly interesting. [END SPOILER]

When you absolutely, positively MUST cast Zach Braff, but can only afford to pay him in POG’s… call this guy.

The Lowdown

First of all, these nice folks made a movie. Just what the hell did you or I make? That’s right: nuthin’. We were too busy playing Call of Duty, masturbating and catching up on Breaking Bad (hopefully not all at once). So good for them, because it’s not exactly easy. And that is just about the extent to which I will take the filmmakers side on this one.

This movie presents itself as if it is being watched on a VHS cassette taped off of a late-nite cable show hosted by a flirty, retro pinup named “Candy Adams” who is played by Carly Goodspeed. This begs several questions. The first is why (A: possibly to get the running time over 80 minutes)? The second is why does the conceit feel so under-utilized (A: I don’t know) and the third is why didn’t she just use the name Carly Goodspeed, which is way more awesome than Candy Adams (A: because they didn’t ask me, that’s’ why)?

I’ve never been less interested in how many licks it takes.

This movie proper emulates the tropes of a classic slasher flick. There’s a wild-eyed war veteran who tries to warn the kids. There are hapless cops. There are montages of drugs and sex. There’s a survivor girl, smart younger kid, jerk, jock, etc. But they do it without bringing anything new or interesting to the endeavor. It is the filmic equivalent of someone posting a video of themselves lip-synching a song on Youtube. A shot-for-shot ripoff of Evil Dead (which it looks like we may be getting soon anyway) would have made more sense.

Worse yet, the reason such movies were and are so numerous in the first place is because gore is cheap and bare breasts are cheaper (I’m told). This movie has plenty of the second but could use a lot more of the first. I can remember only one (admittedly impressive) kill that didn’t consist of quick, vague shots of stabbing / slashing and some too-purplish blood sprayed about.

It was only a matter of time before someone “Sweded” The Wrestler.

To drone on would be cruel and pointless. The movie is exactly what you expect: a bargain bin slasher flick shot (very obviously) on video by ambitious novices. Movies in this budget range can occasionally be worth your time. Despite some good intentions and game participants, this is not one of those occasions. Could you or I do better with the same resources? Who knows… but you could do better with your 85 minutes.

The Package

Unsurprisingly, I found the special features more entertaining than the not-special feature. These seem like fun people to hang out with.  It’s a shame they probably wouldn’t want me as a friend now.


Out of a Possible 5 Stars