Shock Value (2014)

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Oh good, a movie that I didn’t like but for some reason sat all the way through. Well, lets talk about it.

Struggling ‘B’ movie Director blackmails a serial killer to be the star of his next film.

I didn’t know until I looked at the IMDB page that this was a Horror/Comedy. The trouble with the vast majority of horror comedies is that they aren’t funny, and this is a prime example. When directors embark on projects like Horror-Comedy or Black-Comedy without understanding the things that make the other examples of that genre funny, you get things like this. A movie with only two likable characters, jokes that don’t land, and a bizarre amount of style-over-substance.

The film is shot in a similar style to another 2014 movie called The Devil’s Mile, where they opted for post-production atmosphere instead of creating it organically and on the set. What do I mean by that? As far as I can tell, in both cases, they shot what they could shoot and then cranked up the contrast in Final Cut. I understand that sometimes it can be very hard to make a movie on a low budget, and to make a movie look the way you want it to when the constraints of a smaller budget are on you, which is why I always (ALWAYS) advocate to WORK WITHIN YOUR BUDGET. If you try and make a low-budget movie look like it isn’t, then you run into the problem of having it look worse than it might have had you just worked within your means.

shock-value

The movie also suffers from over-written dialogue, and at times sort of made me feel like the film maker thought I was stupid. I really don’t like being talked down to by a movie, which you get when a movie takes itself perhaps a bit to seriously. That being said, I’m sure some of you will watch this movie and really enjoy it, and tell me that I didn’t get it. Fine. Maybe I didn’t, but this isn’t your review.

I did mention that it had some likable actors, and it does. I did enjoy the actor playing Nick the serial killer (Anthony Bravo) and the performance from Michelle Campbell (Justine in the film) worked for me as well. Plus, the two of them were quirky and had a pretty decent chemistry which made it easy to like them. There is also a cameo from Malcolm McDowell… but, why though? It doesn’t even really make a ton of sense, and overall his appearance just took me out of the movie as a “Oh hey, I remember him from a bunch of movies I’d rather be watching”.

It’s really just not worth your time overall, and that’s about all I have to say about it. It does have a couple of pretty good effects, which makes sense when you look at the director’s IMDB page and see that he was on 21 episodes of the make-up reality show FACE OFF. This time around though, good effects don’t really add up to much with a lousy script and lousy actors. I’m sure it’s some kind of satirical statement about who cares..but well, I really don’t care.

 

FINAL GRADE: C- 

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