Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Behind the Mask: Rise of Leslie Vernon (2006)

Starring:  Angela Goethals, Kate Lang Johnson, and Ben Pace

Homicidal Maniac: Nathan Baesel as Leslie Vernon

Run time: 1:32:00

Quick Synopsis:  A soon to be iconic serial killer allows a trio of film students to document the tricks of his trade as he prepares for his killing spree.

This movie is a must see for any horror fan, especially fans of the slasher.  The film can be cut into two parts, a fake documentary and a slasher.  The mockumentary takes up about two thirds of the film and is filmed with so many great scenes and other clever Easter egg-like bits of information that help to deconstruct the slasher sub-genre.  The viewer learns about red herrings, ahabs, and the final girl as well as the symbolism that goes along with each.  There are fun references to other films throughout the movie including:
Halloween, A Nightmare on Elm Street, Friday the 13th, Child's Play, The Shining, Hellraiser and The Evil Dead.  The audience also gets "answers" to the many questions that come up during horror movies.  "How does the killer catch the victims if he is always walking?" "How does he seem to go from one side of the house to the other in no time?"  The humor and entertainment is great throughout all of these scenes.  As the movie shifts to a slasher there is little drop off.  Even with the knowledge of what is going to happen next (Leslie explains how the night is supposed to go) the movie does not lose any enjoyment.  It actually adds to the amusement.  Fortunately, Leslie does leave out a small twist to the film ending that may surprise some.  Even if the viewer is able to figure it out it will be enjoyed.  Behind the Mask: Rise of Leslie Vernon is a highly entertaining awful horror movie.

Fun Fact: Kane Hodder makes a cameo at the beginning of the film at a house on the "infamous" Elm Street.

Hidden Gem:  The wardrobe worn by Robert Englund's character is nearly identical to  that of Dr. Loomis in the Halloween franchise.

Total Kill Count: 10
Mrs. Collinwood- Zelda Rubinstein (34:00) Stabbed in the Back Gore Rating: 1
Mike (59:00) Cut Up/Offscreen Gore Rating: 3
Cheerleader Girl (59:00) Cut Up/Offscreen Gore Rating: 3
Pete- Anthony Forsyth (1:06:00) Pitch Fork through Stomach Gore Rating: 5
Stoned Guy- Teo Gomez (1:10:00) Stabbed in Back of Neck Gore Rating: 5
Slightly More Stoned Guy- Matt Bolt (1:10:00) Heart Ripped Out/Handed to Him Gore Rating: 7
Kelly- Kate Lang Johnson (1:14:00) Falls Out of Window Gore Rating: 1
Todd- Britain Spellings (1:15:00) Neck Snapped/Offscreen Gore Rating: --
Lauren- Krissy Carlson (1:18:00) Cut Up Gore Rating: 4
Shane- Hart Turner (1:18:00) Hanged Gore Rating: 2

             Horror Film: 8
             Entertainment: 10
             Gore: 5
             Overall: 7.75