Once in a while, the conveyor belt of horror I stream stops short with a movie I simply must own. This time around, the conveyor belt just kept on moving. Not a horrible trio of films, but nothing that will stick with you.
WATCH ME (2006)
I’ll give this one credit for managing to stay mostly confined to a single apartment and maintaining an excellent, suspenseful atmosphere complete with some creepy moments.
The problem is, Watch Me is virtually The Ring. Just swap out the black hair for red and the VHS tape for an email attachment. There’s even a copycat scene of the main girl finding her friend curled up in a closet with Ring face.
To add some originality to the plot, all the victims are discovered with their mouths sewn shut. Not to mention, there’s a snuff film side plot!
There’s not much more I can say about this one, except that the final frame jump scare feels like something from an amateur fan film and isn’t in keeping with the well-done movie it punctuates.
THE ALPHABET KILLER (2008)
Rob Schmidt, director of Wrong Turn, brings Eliza Dushku back for a supernatural interpretation of a true crime case.
Don’t expect gruesome serial killer deaths scenes, because this film is about Eliza as a detective on the case who starts to lose her shit when a girl ghost begins haunting her.
Her relationship with her man falls apart (Cary Elwes of Saw), she lands in group therapy with Timothy Hutton, and finally, she ends up back on the case.
Eventually, the relentless ghost girl leads her to the killer for an okay suspense finale. Essentially, this one feels like a made-for-TV movie.
Take a simple slasher concept and toss in a convoluted mix of flashbacks, jumps in timeline, and excessive subplots, and you have this mess of a movie.
Allison Lange (Christina’s House, Gacy, Single White Female 2, Alone in the Dark II) stars as a med student who joins her friends for a vacation at a castle-like house. Little do they know they are being followed by a man in black leather with long black hair, who looks like he should be the lead singer of an industrial/thrash metal band.
But it becomes clear something is wrong when they all wake up to find fresh surgery sutures in their sides.
Then we’re hit with an overblown plot involving an insane surgeon with a veritable organ harvesting assembly line, including an entire staff.
A good portion of the film has them simply acting like an everyday medical staff as they go about dissecting the cast, which really manages to water down just how much torture porn is taking place here.
Honestly, the only part of the film I like is when our main girl turns the tables and begins her own little massacre, leading to an equally satisfying final twist. But even this end segment is hampered by way too much exposition. However, there is a much tighter end in the film…that of the man in black.