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Bloody Hell

Australia / USA 2020
produced by
Joshua Paul, Brett Thornquest, Steven Matusko (executive), Eclectik Vision, Heart Sleeve Productions
directed by Alister Grierson
starring Ben O'Toole, Meg Fraser, Caroline Craig, Matthew Sunderland, Travis Jeffery, Jack Finsterer, David Hill, Joshua Brennan, Ashlee Lollback, Sophia Emberson-Bain, Ryan Tarran, Scott George, Daniel Weaver, Brad McMurray, Sean Lynch, Jessi Robertson, Charles Allen, Louis Toshio Okada, Juan Fernando Monge, Oakley Kwon, Tim Ross, Wilhelmina Lyffyt, Bryan Probets, Cameron Leonard, Korey Williams, Carmel Rose, Ellen Bailey, Alan David Lee, Chris Bridgewater, Nathan Kannegiesser, Jim Knobeloch, Helen Howard, Frances Marrington, Lisa Campos, Caleb Enoka, Robert Benjamin
written by Robert Benjamin, music by the Argonaut Quartet, special makeup effects by JMB FX Studio

review by
Mike Haberfelner

Available on DVD !

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When the bank he's just making a transaction at is robbed and by sheer coincidence veteran Rex (Ben O'Toole) gets his hands on a gun, he does the heroic thing and fights back - if not out of pure selflessness but to impress Maddy (Ashlee Lollback), the bank teller he has long had a crush on. Unfortunately, he goes a little overboard there and accidently causes the death of a security officer, which leads to an 8 year stretch in prison for manslaughter, plus Maddy doesn't want to have anything to do with him anymore. So once out, Rex decides to skip the country for Finland - where he's abducted as soon as he touches ground, and ultimately he wakes up hanging from the ceiling with one of his legs amputated, without any idea of how or why he got there. And the only person he has to talk to for the longest time is - his imaginary self, who is a more sarcastic version of himself and most probably the result of PTSD from Afghanistan. He's not always Rex's nicest self to be sure, but also a cheerleader should the situation be hopeless. Eventually, he finds out he's the prisoner of a deranged family (led by Caroline Craig and Matthew Sunderland) who have turned to kidnapping and eating humans since one of their sons (Caleb Enoka) has turned out to be an incorrigible cannibal, and they have pretty much devoured tourists by the dozen before getting their hands on Rex. But there's hope for Rex, Alia (Meg Fraser), daughter of the house who has never taken to the family's diet and is thus treated like dirt by the others. She has tried to escape a dozen of times, without success - but she sees something in Rex that might change her fate. Then again, can Rex do much against a family of hardened cannibals having to relie on just one leg ...

 

Even if the synopsis of this movie sounds very grim, and its references to The Texas Chainsaw Massacre seem very deliberate, this is actually a pretty funny film (provided you've got a macabre sense of humour of course), as it finds the irony in many exaggerated genre tropes, but doesn't veer off into just broad comedy but also honours its horror roots - for a pretty hilarious mix of suspense, shocks and laughs, thanks not only to a clever script but also a horror-savvy and atmosphere heavy direction, and a solid cast that plays it straight - to comical effect.

 

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review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Tales to Chill
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Tales to Chill
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a collection of short stories and mini-plays
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Tales to Chill
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Out now from
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On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD