For the love of Jonathan Bennett

Gay cutie Jonathan Bennett starred as the love interest in Mean Girls, but we most recently saw him in gay horror flick Fire Island, so I figured it was time to dig into some other horror movies he’s done. In each case he’s playing it straight, however there is a very raunchy, gay edge to one of them.


You would think a film about two strangers visiting a town with a history of witch trials and residents suffering from fungus poisoning would bring us an eerie story, but this film tries way too hard to create suspenseful atmosphere without offering any actual suspense.

Jonathan Bennett plays a writer looking for inspiration for a story, and his female roommate is a reporter doing a story on the town’s dark side, which no locals want to talk about.

As Bennett lies low and the main girl goes around town trying to dig up information, there are guys in cult robes spying on her, as well as dudes with syringes sneaking around injecting people. It’s all set to ominous music that is a wee bit too hyperbolic to make this feel like scary shit is going to happen, considering it never does.

Other bizarre elements include an androgynous anime looking figure in the woods, as well as a Black guy who wants to clear his slave ancestors of accusations of witchcraft.

None of the details ever come together or ramp up to something thrilling, and it becomes clear why if you make it to the end. There is a twist worthy of a Twilight Zone episode, which would explain why this movie should have been a 30-minute short and not an unsustainable 90-minute movie.

THE DAWN (2019)

Bennett only appears in the first 15 minutes or so of this “possession” movie, and very briefly in a scene at the end. He plays a father suffering from PTSD after World War I. One evening he goes around the house and murders most of his family…by beating them to death. I was totally getting a Ronald DeFeo Amityville murders vibe…with fists instead of a gun, which is important to note for later.

Thing is, this is supposed to be a horror movie, so it would have been more effective if the murders had been visually violent and not just bland shots of Bennett raising his arm repeatedly to beat his off-screen victims. Personally, I would have appreciated him going Lizzy Borden on them and hacking them up with an axe. This movie needed horror visuals really bad.

So just one of his daughters escapes unscathed and is sent to live in a nunnery…with right wing nut Stacey Dash. Ugh. Her small role as a nun makes sense—and is a good reminder of why her career died after Clueless.

The main girl has nightmarish dreams that amount to lame made-for-TV level “horror” as she struggles to find faith to become a nun. She’s afraid that she’s going to become like her father. It is soooooo boring.

Eventually she ends up strapped to a bed possessed with no demon makeup. Yawn. The real shocker is that this dull film suddenly indulges our horror desires by having her rip off a priest’s jaw! Problem is I was too distracted being stunned by the fact that something horrific actually happened to appreciate what I was witnessing.

The movie ends with a bizarre hint of a sequel that seems to be a cash-in on The Conjuring franchise. The main priest is heading to Long Island on a train and looks at a picture of a house in a book…The Amityville House. WTF?

Is this suggesting that Bennett’s demons are going to end up in Ronald DeFeo and push him to slaughter his whole family? And if that is what is being implied, how does this priest from the 1920s know about something that is going to happen in 1974?


This is a horror comedy that is essentially a spoof of the cabin in the woods slasher genre…because the killer, enthusiastic about becoming the next infamous serial killer, keeps getting upstaged by his would be victims.

A group of employees comes to a cabin in the woods for a retreat. Bennett is most definitely the lead here, and he arrives first with a friend and a dildo. Although his character isn’t supposed to be gay, he gets a thrill out of making everyone think his friend is gay. He kicks off the shenanigans by convincing his friend to suck his dildo like it’s his dick when the others walk in. It’s kind of a shame neither of these characters actually turns out to be gay, because their homoerotic chemistry together is delicious.

The whole group of employees is kind of horny and sinful, so there’s plenty of fun, raunchy humor here. There’s also plenty of tension and backstabbing, which eventually leads to violence and even murder!

And that is the problem for our killer. He wants to do all the slashing, but a series of unfortunate incidents and accidents sees the employees killing each other off instead (think Tucker & Dale vs. Evil).

The movie is a lot of fun, and there are plenty of kills and a final battle with the actual killer, but the film does run a little long and starts to drag in the middle.

There’s also a whole nasty segment about a guy having a cell phone sewn into his scrotum that is a little too over the top to even be funny. Personally, I could have overlooked that part if there had been a twist in which Bennett and his friend really were gay for each other.

About Daniel

I am the author of the horror anthologies CLOSET MONSTERS: ZOMBIED OUT AND TALES OF GOTHROTICA and HORNY DEVILS, and the horror novels COMBUSTION and NO PLACE FOR LITTLE ONES. I am also the founder of BOYS, BEARS & SCARES, a facebook page for gay male horror fans! Check it out and like it at
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