This latest trio of films I checked out on Amazon prime might cover familiar territory, but they definitely gave me some cheap thrills, chills, and gore.
RESTRICTED AREA PLOT NO. 666 (2015)
There are so many horror rip-offs from India on Prime that I usually skip them, but the trailer for this one a) has some awesome Evil Dead demon action, and b) has a stud sent from heaven (to hell).
Those are definitely the two reasons to watch this one. The opening scene does have a disturbing 1970s horror vibe to it before we meet modern day friends on a road trip.
After a close call with a near drug overdose, the group gets into a car accident and ends up at a restricted building that looks very much like the Evil Dead cabin. There are some really unnecessary flashes of demons just to let us know what’s to come so we’ll keep watching.
Next we get to feel ancient, because the group finds a dusty old standard tube television and DVD player, which gives them a little back story on where they are.
There’s an absurd montage of the girls posing in their bikinis by a stream, but the good news is that the stud gets objectified as well, and even his cute buddy gets a sexy shot.
Finally the demon action starts…50 minutes in! It’s total Evil Dead shaky cam with raucous sound, fog machines, and the group slowly being turned one by one and attacking each other.
There’s even an eye scene homage to Fulci’s Zombie. While it’s not as fast-paced as it could be, the way in which this film duplicates the look and feel of the Sam Raimi classic really brought me back. If only the fun had struck before the 50-minute mark.
Finally, there is a rather unexpected twist at the end.
13 SOULS (Diggerz: Black Lung Rises) (2017)
Alas, I much prefer the original title of this film, even better if it were just the subtitle without the “Diggerz” part. Black Lung Rises would have spoken directly to the cheesy revenge slasher this is—and given the killer a memorable name in the process.
A corpse miner (Black Lung) buried alive with a bunch of other miners is supernaturally resurrected and must claim the same amount of victims that were left to die years before. Sort of like My Bloody Valentine meets The Fog.
But don’t expect 13 Souls to live up to either of those classics. For starters, I don’t know if you’re as sick of hearing me say it as I am, but my standard suggestion to indie directors applies here—your horror film should never run two hours long.
The result is the same as always. The film drags, there’s way too much unnecessary talk and character development, and lots of boring investigating, all of which left me losing interest in the characters and story—and just wanting more kills.
Thankfully the film delivers the death scenes. They aren’t exactly scary (for instance, they mostly take place in daylight), but plenty of them are nice and gory. However, the attempts at suspense feel unwarranted because it’s hard to consider the killer ominous; he feels more like a vigilante hero who rightfully deserves to get revenge.
I don’t know that I would recommend sitting through this for two hours, but there were some highlights for me. The sheriff is a sexy stud.
Horror hottie Kerry Beyer plays a priest that shockingly jerks off to naked nun porn instead of kiddie porn.
But the best moment is when a woman pulls into her garage and finishes rocking out to a metal song in her car before heading inside the house.
DEMON EYE (2019)
A young woman comes back to her family home after her hot daddy’s death.
She quickly gets a job as a photographer at the place where her dad was a reporter and cozies up to one of her co-workers.
When she finds an occult necklace, she learns of its back story, which involves a witch burned at the stake.
This is your standard “ghost girl” movie, but if you’re nostalgic for the days of The Ring and The Grudge, it delivers plenty of the creeps and crawls you’d hope for, with the bonus of the bitch being on fire!
Seriously, the Demon Eye might be average, but there are some great little horror sequences sprinkled throughout.
This witch bitch mixes it up, never using the same old trick to scare her targets.
Seriously? When has removing the sheet ever worked out?
Just be warned—if you watch the trailer you will spoil virtually every single effective horror scene in the film.