Tuesday, October 10, 2006

DVD Review: The Pumpkin Karver

It's that time of year again. When a rash of Halloween themed movies head straight to DVD to try to make some quick cash. Which one will be this year's Satan's Little Helper? It won't be The Pumpkin Karver, but don't let that stop you from checking it out. This film has potential, but it just didn't make the most out of the premise. First off is the young man who is the central character. Is he mentally challenged or not? Why does his sister have to stay with him on Halloween night when they're both like 20 years old? I was just wondering, in a movie like this, some detail would be nice. That being said, it wasn't a terrible slasher film, maybe a little tame for my standards since all the carving was done off screen, but the old man's performance is worth watching. His gritty performance as a crazy old coot is simply great. The two stoner dudes I just couldn't take though. Their comic relief was neither comical nor a relief. I also had a problem with the fact that with all those kids at the Halloween party, only a few get killed and you never see what happens to all the rest of them. Do they continue to party on? Do they go home? I'm a sucker for Halloween themed slashers but there are too many questions left unanswered with this one. A slasher movie doesn't need to be this stupid. They can be well thought out at times. Call this "the little slasher that almost did". It carves a ** out of *****. Oh, yeah, that face on the box cover, that's not the Pumpkin Karver, I don't know who that is, he's not in the movie, but he's creepier looking than the killer and should have been in it!

DVD Review: Hillside Cannibals

Was the Hills Have Eyes remake so popular that it needs this many low budget rip offs? Hillside Cannibals is actually more in the vein of Jack Ketchum's novel Off Season, but without everything that made that novel so great. This is a rather boring foray into the cannibalistic hill dwellers genre. A "family" of cannibals reside in the hills of a desert out in the middle of nowhere and they feast on anyone who gets too close to their lair. With more grunting and hooting than what's heard at the local zoo, for some reason the actors were told to act like monkeys. Monkeys aren't cannibals. Maybe it was their take on a caveman. Cavemen weren't cannibals either. I don't know, but it made for an irritating movie experience. Don't head into these hills. * out of *****.