L.A. Slasher (2015) Review
Directed by Martin Owen
Written by Martin Owen, Elizabeth Morris, Abigail Wright, Tim burke & Sean Decker
Starring Mischa Barton, Danny Trejo, Dave Bautista, Brooke Hogan, Tori Black, Drake Bell,
Ashlynn Yennie, Barbara Nedeljakova, Elizabeth Morris, Korrina Rico, Marisa Lauren,
Frank Collison, Abigail Wright & Andy Dick
"Driven to rage over the tawdry excesses of reality television, a self-appointed cultural crusader kidnaps several very famous nobodies to make his point- but his crimes only generate more tabloid frenzy."
As someone who really despises reality TV and things like The Kardashians I had higher than average hopes that I'd enjoy this film - a serial killer in LA who goes on a rampage in LA killing useless socialites and wannabe reality TV stars and anyone who is rich and useless and basically just famous for being famous, sounds almost like a perfect recipe for a slasher movie.
Not exactly. While it looked and sounded amazing I think a lot more effort should have been put into the writing - a better story, better dialogue and better character development could have made this film amazing. The soundtrack was a mixture of 80's music and modern synth-wave and the filmmakers went for the 'neon' look that a lot of filmmakers seem to be going for these days since Gasper Noé and Nicolas Wending Refn made if popular and we've seen if used more recently in 80's throwbacks such as Franck Khalfoun's Maniac and David Robert Mitchell's It Follows. The killer dresses in a sharp white suit, white gloves and a crazy unique looking mask that looks like someone who has overdone it on their face with plastic surgery, fitting for the city that it's set in I thought. His voice sounds like a cross between Deadpool and Roger from American Dad, then as I watched the end credits I realised it was Andy Dick.
The editing is really quick and sharp, we even get constant onscreen pop-ups of social media updates from the killer and most of the cast, blatantly hammering home the fact that everyone feels the need to tell the world their every move these days. I think the main problem with the film is the fact that none of the main characters are very likable, the only likable characters are also the only noticeable actors - Dave Bautista and Danny Trejo being a prime example. Their portrayal of two drug dealers could've been great if they had more than five minutes screen time. A funny scene with them and a rich chick trying to buy drugs from them in a motel room is definitely one of the highlights of the entire film. Eric Roberts also pops up as the sleazebag mayor of LA, another waste of a part that should've been more than just a cameo. We also get annoyingly brief glimpses of Brooke Hogan, porn star Tori Black, star of Eli Roth's Hostel Barbara Nedeljakova and Ashlynn Yennie of Human Centipede fame.
Finally, another huge problem I had with this film is the gore, or the lack of it. I know not all slasher movies need to be blood soaked and filled with gore to be great, John Carpneter's Halloween and Tobe Hooper's Texas Chainsaw Massacre being perfect examples. But those two movies were oozing with atmosphere and dread - LA Slasher seriosly lacked all of that. It felt more like an episode of Scream Queens or MTV's Scream, except even those have cool kills and gory death scenes. In LA Slasher the kills were either too quick to notice or done off screen. I really hate to shit all over movies that I watch and review but altogether I saw this as a big disappointment and a waste of a cool concept and a good cast. I am the forgiving type though and I'll eventually go back and watch it again to see if I am being too harsh, maybe I'll enjoy it a lot more second time around. In the mean time I'll stick to 80s slashers I grew up with. I give L.A. Slasher 2 dead reality tv stars out of 5, trust me if I could I'd give a whole lot more....