Thursday, October 15, 2015

The Redsin Tower

Director - Fred Vogel (August Underground, Maskhead)
Starring - Bethany Newell, Perry Tiberio (Better Luck Yesterday), and Jessica Kennedy (Deadtime Stories 2)
Release Date - 2006
Genre - Horror
Tagline - "Butchery and carnage will reign upon the holy"
Format - DVD (Personal Collection)

Rating (out of 5):
     Fred Vogel, his wife Shelby, and ToeTag are well known around the horror community and has became the face of underground horror with the release of his August Underground way back in 2001.  August Underground was filmed found footage style and followed two killers as they tortured and murdered several individuals.  This film became a hit and is still talked about on almost every horror group, forum, blog, and site to this day.  I had heard about this film for years but never checked it out.  In April I attended Cinema Wasteland for the first time.  I planned on meeting Fred and Shelby at the ToeTag booth and grabbing the AU trilogy but every time I walked by they were with customers or away from the booth.  I was able to talk to filmmaker Keith Voigt Jr. who was manning the booth for them in their absence.  He told me about Fred's film The Redsin Tower.  This one was filmed between August Underground's Mordum and August Underground's Penance.  The film was just released in a 5 disc set and Keith was showing it to me.  It looked really interesting so I decided to check it out and grabbed a copy.
     The film begins with a young lady named Kim (Newell) dumping her clingy and unstable boyfriend Mitch (Tiberio).  Mitch does not handle the break up very well and gets himself a gun to force her into taking him back or take her out.  Kim's friend takes her to a friend's house where a bunch of them are getting together to go to a party.  Mitch finds out and calls the police hoping it would deter her from going out and partying with several guys.  His plan backfires and the group decide to party it up at Redsin Tower.  Redsin Tower is a local abandoned building surrounded in legends involving a man who would torture some of the townsfolk in the name of alchemy.  They are able to break inside and start pounding beers, smoking pot, and making out.  Sadly, they are not along.  Redsin Tower is home to several restless spirits who possess the living and bring about bloodshed.
     Fans of extreme horror praise Vogel and his August Underground trilogy but I had never heard anyone mention The Redsin Tower before speaking with Keith at Cinema Wasteland.  I may had heard of it in passing but it was never talked about in depth like AU was and still is.  Most people praise the brutality of AU but I was curious as to why people never mention this film.  Was it not as brutal as AU or was it pure shit on film?  Either way, I was very impressed with the 5 disc set so I wanted to see the film and I am glad I picked it up.  The acting in this one is actually pretty solid.  Every cast member looks and feels natural in their roles with the exception of director Fred Vogel who portrays stoner Curtis Pepper.  Every cast member felt like they were being themselves which made their interactions with one another feel very genuine and sincere.  With that being said, Fred's character feels very out of place.  Every character looks and feels like a character you would find in a more serious horror movie which only makes sense considering this is a serious horror films and not a comedy in the lines of Troma and Chris Seaver.  Curtis Pepper just felt a little too out of place and more for a films that had unusual characters like a Troma flick.  The story for this one is pretty fun and works very well with the location and a small budget.  The film uses the location very well and it works to bring about some great atmosphere that we really don't get among indie horror flicks.  The story itself is not something new.  In fact, it feels like a remake of Night of the Demons.  The film is fun and if you want to see party goers possessed when its not Halloween then it works perfectly.  On the other hand, I was expecting the film to be completely fucked up but the film was more traditional horror with just a few what the fuck moments scattered throughout.  Finally, the film has a few on screen kills that are bloody and very effective.  The kills themselves have some great practical effects that look amazing.  The only downside to this is there wasn't enough kills for the viewer to enjoy.  One of the most impressive aspects of the film is the camera work.  The cinematography was amazing in this film which is something we rarely get to see in indie horror films.  Indie directors rarely gamble with camera play but Fred did and it works very well.  Overall, The Redsin Tower is a surprisingly well shot horror film that is more polished than I expected from a man that is known the world over for his contributions to underground horror.  This is honestly one of the best possession films I have seen since The Exorcist.  Check it out and grab a copy while you can!

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