Well, I got my hopes up for these two films, both sort of horror comedies for completely different reasons. Each had its moments, but also left me wanting more than I got….
RING RING (2019)
Ring Ring is almost a fun little darkly comic Halloween horror film, but with a 72-minute running time, I feel like it is missing a “chapter.” And that chapter should have filled in all the gaps, delivered more horror, and provided more Halloween spirit.
A bunch of telemarketers gets laid off by their boss…Lou Ferrigno! Awesome, except…he’s barely in the movie.
We meet various characters catching an Uber ride with a weirdo, and we can only guess what becomes of them.
Unfortunately, there’s a gay couple that I was hoping would be lead characters, but they were gone in a flash.
In fact, the movie quickly whittles down to having only two characters!
On Halloween, a guy and a girl who stole the client list after they got fired to bring to their next job discover that they’ve lost the phone on which it was stored.
They track the phone to a house, break in…and are trapped in the basement by the druggy who lives there.
It sounds so more fun than it is. There are a few funny parts and eventually some vicious fighting, but the whole situation barely has any serious incidents to ramp up suspense or terror. The crazy guy isn’t even all that scary or threatening. Plus, the film takes place mostly during the day, so the Halloween holiday isn’t at the forefront.
THE MOLEMAN OF BELMONT AVENUE (2011)
Silly looking horror comedies can go either way, and this one directed by its two leads is a buddy horror comedy that is a bit too self-indulgent. The guys simply are not as funny as they think they are in terms of the writing–the humor comes off like it is trying way too hard to convince us it’s funny.
It also detracts from the best part; the “moleman” living in the vents of their apartment building could have been absolutely terrifying if the film had been able to strike a balance between comedy and horror. Instead, it mostly feels like a forced sex/stoner comedy.
Completely underutilized as tenants are both Robert Englund and Dana DeLorenzo of Ash vs. Evil Dead.
If only the guys had known then how awesome she would be playing against Bruce Campbell and Ray Santiago, they probably would have upgrade her to their comic female third wheel.
Anyway, the guys hang at a bar with their friends, lament the lost days of their punk band, try to keep the Moleman secret from their tenants when he starts taking their pets (they do a good job considering we barely see him)…
…and eventually head into the vents to hunt down him down—my favorite part. Still, so much opportunity was missed here.