Saturday, August 12, 2017
THE NIGHT OF SOMETHING STRANGE (2016)
Directed & Story By: Jonathan Straiton
Written By: Jonathan Straiton, Ron Bonk & Mean Gene
Cinematography By: Rex Femscared
Editor: Brooklynn Taylor
Cast: Trey Harrison, Rebecca C. Kasek, Nicola Fiore, Janey Mayson, Tarrance Taylor, Toni Anne Gamble, Brinke Stevens
Five teenage friends set out for the beach on their Spring Break vacation. Good times are cut short when one of the group, Carrie, contracts a deadly sexual transmitted disease during a bathroom stop. When they stop for the night at an isolated motel, the real terror begins when the STD virus starts running rampant, turning those infected into the living dead. However, there's more going on at the motel than meets the eye. "Night of the STD's" was the original title. Which would more fit the film
The film comes across more like a film that was submitted to a local film festival. It reminds one of a Troma Studios movie as it has all the ingredients. Except not as much nudity as you would expect considering the plot. And actually less pun induced but better made than most of their movies. Though of similar quality. Made on a $40,000 budget.
The film is impressive especially in the special effects department, for what looks like a low show string budget. While it has a lot of problems. (Little things like not keeping a characters make-up constant before and after transformation) There are lots of bodily fluids and i mean all body fluids, just gushing around in this film.
It comes off as seeming like the work of some accomplished high school student filmmakers. Though i don't really want to pick on a truly independent film. As it will Already have a set limited audience. This is a film that deserves to be seen.
I can appreciate that it offers something somewhat fresh and fun. You can tell thought and ideas went into this film. Even when it feels like it is off best by a few steps.
The film is predictable but it is supposed to be as it fits the spirit and seems at times to revel in the ridiculous and knowing stupidity. Yet still better than any recent horror spoof.
I can say that the following term about a film doesn't come up very often but with this film I have to say. It is very gross at times there are loads of scatalogical humor. which the film uses at any point it can. If you make it past a certain point. You find yourself getting into it.
Why not have the guy still be attached to his ass or kill him by ripping penis out while still alive. Yes I wrote that sentence. Strangely despite having rather limited sex scenes and nudity. This film could have easily been a legitimate porno. As the plot leaves an opening for plenty of sex scenes. It could still make the same type of impact and not the same notes. Though I am sure be judged differently. Unfortunately though comedic. Some of the sex scenes can be seen more as rape. As usually done while person is unconscious or possessed though still usually ends or involves an attack. So that they are violent and usually against the characters will at some point. Only here because they are zombies made to look more supernatural in their intent and horrific yet humorous. Leaves the film with a bad taste and after taste if you really examine it. They even in the more sensitive and maybe controversial scenes knows the right tone to use so that it doesn't feel uncaring, off best or insulting.
The film could use more of a polish. Which could have helped make the film a bit more bearable. As you can feel this as an attempt to make a competent film and have fun with the rules and the genre.
The film telegraphs the final girl pretty much with her introduction. As the film is filled with familiar character types. Though most of them aren't that likeable. Which helps them come off as more believable actually. Though doesn't endear themselves to you. So as they are dispatched you Aren't too devastated. As at least one character gets what is coming to him deservedly.
The African-American character from Brooklyn is by far the funniest character and creation. Also extra over the top ridiculous.The film gets to the point, but the establishing at the beginning feels stilted.
The film seems to keep trying to top itself. Surprised it didn't appear in the SyFy channel. As it seems to have that type of production. Though clearly not much CGI. Plus the material is obviously very risqué. What to me was particularly shocking was the ending and the amount of gore. Amazed also what they could get away with, with only a seemingly R Rating.
Production went through 3 different make-up effects artist. The first dropped out 6 weeks before production. The second was fired after 3 weeks of filming. The third stayed on till completion. Digital masking had to be added to fix make-up in post-production prolonging post for more than a year.
Due to post-production fixes and budget constraints, the film took almost 4 years to complete.
As you can tell by now the film is very sexually tinged. More exploitation as an aim. Which does lead it to be in poor taste at times, but horror fans will probably enjoy it to some degree. Maybe for the attempt at something somewhat different.
The film Certainly has more sex involved than many modern day horror films, but unfortunately what feels like a minor misogynistic streak. It would have been interesting if the film had left a scene where a character is left to Wonder at first is this so bad or feel both good and bad thinking that this is how maybe sex is supposed to feel. Instead of making it so simple cut and dry. Or maybe a scene where people shot and killed by authorities as they are all bloody and could be contaminated or thought to be zombies themselves.
This film seems more than anything to be a labor of love. It's a splatter horror comedy that seems determined to provoke the audience into feeling someway.
It's a film that obviously want s to provide entertainment and have fun within the genre and it succeeds. Though the film seems more aimed at horror aficionados and fans.
The films logic doesn't always exactly make sense like the scene where one of the zombies has an elongated penis it seems that is ridiculously huge. So that it feels like the film is starting to go overboard.
It's ridiculous scenes and additions like that and zombie acid jizz, also the zombies look like they are more affected and used Halloween make-up for their transformation look.
Is it fair to compare to other films that have more resources and polish? Well it's aim is to entertain like other films plus put itself out there to be seen.
I can say that the film is different with just as many unintentional laughs as intentional ones. There are no jump scares either. The film does stay endlessly entertaining as long as you don't think much and can enjoy it's low budget origins. That succeeds even maybe despite itself.
While being a good horror film with a sense of humor running throughout with impressive practical horror effects and make-up. That wears it's inspirations on it's sleeve