Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Weird Killers: Unearthed (2007)

After Dark, does quality matter?  The After Dark Horror fest has gone through an odd change over the last few years.  Initially, it was a bunch of independent, low-budget horror films that were marketed as being 'too scary for theaters.'  As time has gone by, the people behind it have done almost solely a video market release and gotten more commercial fare.  A movie that is too disturbing for theaters- The Butterfly Effect 3.  Really?!?  So what is today's film about?  A monster.  That's it.  Seriously, there's not much more to it, despite how the film tries to claim otherwise.  Put away your shovels and get out your banner, because this movie has just been...
The film begins with some random death.  Get used to that happening in After Dark Horror Fest releases!  It's at this time that we meet the randomly-assorted cast members of this film.  We have Charlie Murphy as...well, Charlie Murphy.  There's Emmanuelle Vaugier as the town's Sheriff...and the town drunk.  You must be a small town if you can't find anybody else!  There a bunch of other people, but they aren't really worth mentioning.  The Sheriff is called to investigate a series of cattle mutilations.  Damn you, Bryan Danielson (hi, Indy fans)!  The local cattle owner is upset by this series of events, but the Sheriff explains how little money he can get reimbursed per head.  Wow- scintillating dialog!  After some more filler, most of the group ends up in a bar where a monster attacks.  Gee- this feels somewhat familiar.
After some more kills and the like, the film moves to a new location.  Good- you had me worried for a minute.  The group goes to a cave- not so good.  On the plus side, you can barely see the movie's special effects.  On the negative side, you can barely see the movie's special effects.  They run across a mysterious man who seems to know all of the answers.  That fact- along with his weird haircut- make him out to be important.  He explains that the monster was buried in the ground hundreds of years ago and that his family line has always fought to keep the thing at bay.  What is it?  Well, based on the one good look we've gotten at it so far, it appears to be Reptile from Mortal Kombat: Annihilation.  Yeah, that was worth the build-up.
The whole thing boils down to one, stupid plan.  Basically, the only way they can think of to kill the monster is to poison him/herself and get eaten.  It's a little better than that, but not by much.  A bunch of people die- including CHARLIE MUR-PHY- whittling down the cast to the minor stars.  Finally, we learn what the trauma was that drove the Sheriff to drink.  Via flashbacks, we see that she had a failed marriage and a vicious custody fight.  During a scuffle, she accidentally shot her own kid.  In the End, she poisons herself before the creature attacks, causing it to leap away and die.  Hurray?  The End.
What good is a monster that you can't see?  The plot is okay, but doesn't really amount to much.  It's basically two or three horror film cliches thrown together.  People in a far-off place and away from society- check.  Vague monster with a loose origin- check.  Family lineage related to a monster- check.  Other than these random cliches, there is nothing to talk about.  This is the barest of bare-bones horror screenplays with a lot of little things thrown in to look important.  When you put a lot of foil on a broken bike, it's still broken.  This movie is not terrible or anything- it's just kind of 'meh.'  You've seen this movie before and you will see it again.  This movie does nothing to distinguish itself from so many other horror films.  Is it wonder that it's so obscure, given that it came out in 2007?  I don't think so.
Next up, the French strike again.  This time, it's a vampire comedy...with the Russian guy from Goldeneye in it.  Stay tuned...

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