Friday, September 13, 2013

Do Not Mark Your Calendar for this Bloody Homecoming: A Movie Review

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*full disclosure: a DVD screener of his film was provided by RLJ Entertainment.

Director: Brian C. Weed.

Writer: Jake Helgren.

Cast: Jim Tavaré, Rae Latt, Lexi Giovagnoli and Alex Dobrenko.

Brian C. Weed's first film as director is a lackluster effort titled Bloody Homecoming. Jake Helgren's script follows plotlines from the '80s, with Bloody Homecoming providing a conventional slasher film. But, this is no Prom Night (2008) or My Bloody Valentine (2009). Instead, this indie outing is a weak venture, with some really awkward scenes. The actors in this film are amateurs. As well, this revenge tale rarely shines. More blood reds were needed.

The film is a straightforward revenge thriller. But, fans might be wondering about the killer's motivations. Though, few horror fans would be able to make it to the end of this film. Through the film's long ninety minutes, several high schoolers deal with disappearing friends, drinking booze and prepping for a big dance. Your attention might drift as a firefighter stalks the halls of this high school, axe in hand. When the kills do finally come, they are appropriately gory, but over too quick. Bloody Homecoming needed more tension, which could have come through the introduction of more conflict.

Still, Bloody Homecoming does manage to follow some of the conventions of the slasher genre. The killer's identity is kept in mystery, but most viewers will know why this person is murdering others. Revenge is a dish best served cold. Also, the villain, generally, takes out one victim at a time, in an isolated locale. Divide and conquer is the name of the game. In the end, the big reveal is a letdown and the finale is more puff than pow. Bloody Homecoming gets the conventions right, but adds little to this genre.

There is hardly much to like here. Music seems completely absent through the first act. It is almost a surprise when the tunes do begin, just in time for the dance. The acting in this film is very bad. Scenes are stiff and awkward as actors deliver their lines. Their is little emotion or passion behind the delivery. Subplots develop, but the film never drew this viewer into its reality. The visuals onscreen are also rather bleak and the colours looked drained. The conclusion offered a few disturbing visuals, but these final scenes are over much too quickly. This film is difficult to sit through and not worth seeing, for most film fans.

Instead, viewers might be best served by viewing something else. Vancouver director Ryan Nicholson's Famine (2011) is much better than the film seen here. Both Famine and Bloody Homecoming deal with similar settings, characters and budget restrictions. But, Nicholson's film is much bloodier and over-the-top. Bloody Homecoming is just not able to deliver any thrills, nor surprises. Horror fans would be better served looking somewhere else, to get their slasher fix.

Overall: 5.5 out of 10 (few scares, predictable, very indie, low budget, the best thing about the film is its poster art, underwhelming).

A trailer for the film is available here:

Bloody Homecoming's Official Trailer

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