So at this point I have been practicing film criticism and identify multiple angles which to deconstruct a film into its storytelling, technical aspects, and how the production comes together. However, at this point I have been dealing out a lot of praise like most of you people, I enjoy the movies I watch. I know what I like and can find something to praise in most film making efforts. However, I know I have to explore the other spectrum and understand how to negatively discuss a bad movie. So I looked up what the worst movies on Netflix and found this dandy with a 1.9 on Imdb. (Let me remind you, that’s not out of five, but out of 10). So I decided to strap in and this film, well it’s something alright.
Okay I’m less than 30 seconds in and this is horrendously bad. We have this gent (featured above) and the second shot of the movie, never mind the awkward framed Ouija board in the first shot, can’t say his lines. He says 3 lines and there are four noticeable obvious jump cuts. Could they seriously not go all the way in one take, were his pauses in-between every two words that taxing on the audience’s patience that they needed to be cut out of the movie?
The Opening of the movie is four minutes of sheer nonsense, it seems to be every horror movie cliché in the book but maybe that’s the point. I personally wasn’t a fan of Cabin of the Woods but I can understand it was a satire on the genre so maybe that’s what was trying to be done here. But no, I quickly found out and confirmed with the trailer that this was scenes taken from the first movie. Sorry to all you Ouija Experiment fans for my ignorance (I was watching the trailer for the first one and it just has the line “you don’t play Ouija Board you play Nintendo” you’re supposed to laugh at a horror movie, right?)
It’s okay that was just a movie so the cast comes out presented by the theater owner and you can hear this distracting noise, I played it back, a few times in which I think I heard someone talking off screen “Don’t touch that”. How hard is it not to talk near a microphone? So, then we have to suffer through like a Comic-Con Panel discussion, and there’s a creepy sheriff man, and there’s this girl and she goes to ask a question there’s an odd transition were someone walks in front of the camera to do a swipe transition and that means something paranormal is happening…. I guess. Apparently, the answer to her question isn’t important as the film decides to tune her out and then another girl asked if the theater is haunted which prompts the creepy sheriff in the back to practice ventriloquism and speak without opening his mouth.
Nothing important happens for a good ten minutes but here’s some images so you can have fun trying to fill in the blanks.
Then we see the two actors backstage and the script starts becoming self-aware as Swisyzinna has some harsh words for the promotional tees saying they look like shit and asking what they did with the budget. It’s disappointing but I think we are dealing with a Birdemic 2 situation in which people made a horrible movie, people trashed it but earned itself a few ironic views and know the producers are aware and are trying to wink at the audience. Unfortunately, that’s not how things work people are cruel and we want to laugh at you, not with you the first might have been misguided or delusional but this just makes you seem like smug assholes who don’t care about improving.
The script continues to be self-referential as the jokester pops out and does a jumpscare and then talks about how lame and unoriginal it is to pop out and do a jumpscare? Then the actors talk about their favorite part of the script and they have just as much difficulty finding something as I do.
Okay then we come across this scene were “Zinna” is outside in the middle of a dark alley and I’m going to put you in the shoes of this character and you tell me what you would do?
You’re walking home in the pitch black when you stop and drop your sound effect keys down these stairs into a trash pit? Do you A) Call out for help despite there being no one in sight B) Talk to yourself like a manic person shouting phrases like “Hell nah” and “Ain’t nobody got time for this” C) Turn the flashlight on your phone and hold it awkwardly over your head, while breaking the 4th wall and saying your going to be the first to die in the movie or D) Go down there grab your keys and leave like a normal person, what the hell are you even doing there in the first place? If you answered all but D then you’d be correct.
(Pro tip #3 In the middle of your movie have a windows movie maker transition just to remind everyone how you’re editing this.)
Dumb stuff happens and then the actors start going off script yelling at how unprofessional Eric has been and as he is acting “at the lowest level of the oldest profession” which is a joke about prostitution which really makes me sad for poor Eric as actually prostitutes probably turned down acting in this movie. In which he replies with what everyone who worked on this move defends themselves and their life choices with “at least I’m getting paid”.
Another ten minutes go by with nothing important so here’s some images to tickle your imagination.
Oh movie, so the kids from earlier that I didn’t talk about are given the free haunted house tour and during it the annoying guy hands Zinna some blood. The ghost kills her off screen but wacky hi-jinks ensue as the annoying guy doesn’t realize she’s dead because he thinks she faked splitting herself in half? (I’m not amused) Okay, I was wondering if I would get a gem in the script such as the Nintendo line I referred to in the beginning and this is better. “we cannot be those girls in horror movies who do stupid things we have to do smart people things”
So, the two girls from the contest and the annoying guy find a door and outside is the creepy sheriff. Now I bet you can’t guess what happens next. In the plot twist of the century!
The Sheriff is in cahoots with the ghost and head shots the annoying guy. The sheriff closes the door and he puts his flashlight in his mouth and if you’ve made it this far and were taking this film with any seriousness, what are you doing with your life?
And then in the second Plot Twist of the century!!
The Sheriff had long hair this whole time! And in the 3rd plot twist of the century in a throwaway line that I didn’t mention of the actors joking about everyone in the hick town dating their sisters, the sheriff had a child with his sister and that’s the ghost!! (who comes up with this?)
The film finishes with a generic quick edit fight, kill the evil man cliché. During this the ghost who earlier possessed powers such as worm holing people and teleportation just kind of sits there for reasons? Both main girls each complete their character arcs as the blonde proves she is a smart intelligent woman by grabbing a knife and slitting the sheriff’s throat because that’s something a person of average intelligence would never have come up with that. And the dark haired girl (I went the whole movie without remember their names) learns to not be hesitant and act on instincts in the face of danger killing the ghost.
Just kidding that would be fucking stupid what I mean was she shoots but misses the ghost and the blonde shoots the ghost instead. The dark-haired girl expresses how she couldn’t bring harm the ghost and the blonde states how she understands her compassion and states that’s okay because I got your back and the two become friends from their almost fatal encounter.
Just kidding that would be fucking stupid, the dark hair girls states how she couldn’t kill the poorly made Halloween costume and as a final scare, the Halloween costume springs back to life behind her and chomps down on her neck killing her. The blonde kills the ghost with a lot of ghost blood recreating the finale of the Evil Dead. She walks out of theater and as a final final scare the sheriff is lurking over her shoulder.
If I didn’t get my opinion across then here it is: this movie sucks. I don’t like to nitpick about things like it sounded like it was recorded on a potato or this or that technically was awful because I understand that this did not have a Hollywood budget but the horror genre more than any other drills home how managing budget and creatively working around it can cause the project to thrive. More than technical aspects films are still about good storytelling and for this film I couldn’t even recall half the characters’ names because you don’t care about any of them. The film should have had a single focus narrative follow one character and give them a motivation as to why the put themselves there and have them at the end realize how they need to change or why they’re perfect the way they are despite forces opposing them. The girl who dies first has more time spent on developing who she is than the people in the climax. It’s sad that these people were obviously given a second chance, the production quality was a step up from the first movie but again it sucks because they don’t know how to tell a story. Film students have certainly put together better than this and it’s a shame these people got a chance to what I believe to be an intentionally churned out piece of crap. This movie is broken in every conceivable way and it fails to have enough absurdity to warrant the so bad it’s good genre. It might have a couple laughs for you but I would avoid this one. Director and Writer Israel Luna nothing against you personally I respect your ability to get your product out there but I hope you’ve seen the negative reviews and for your next project (apparently, he’s releasing a film titled Kicking Zombie Ass for Jesus) you can take it with a grain of salt and work towards becoming a better filmmaker.
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