Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Killing Brooke

Director - David Zagorski (The Devil's Nightmare, Skin Deep: The Box)
Starring - Colin Allen (Stiff Odds, Spooners), Kt Baldassaro (The Purge: Election Year, Ted 2), and Alex Fandel (Most Likely, After)
Release Date - 2012
Genre - Horror
Tagline - "The honeymoon is over!"
Format - DVD (Personal Collection) (Screener)

Rating (out of 5):
     December has been a damn good month for movies.  I have seen so many amazing films this month and it looks like the hits keep on coming.  After watching Don't Breathe and the first episode of Full Moon's Ravenwolf Towers I decided to follow it up with a Wild Eye Releasing flick.  I couldn't make up my mind as to which one to watch so I went with Killing Brooke just because I liked the film's artwork.  This is one of those films that was sent my way to review sometime ago and I am just now getting around to checking it out.  This is a mid-grade horror film in regards to Wild Eye and the other horror films they have released but from an indie horror stand point this one is entertaining but rough around the edges.  Thanks Wild Eye for sending this one my way.

     The film follows newlyweds Brooke and Chloe as they travel out of town for their honeymoon when they stop at a bar.  They meet Vance.  The three drink the night away and find themselves in a threesome that same night.  The next morning Vance asks them for a ride while Chloe shows discuss for her acts from the previous night.  Brooke convinces her to let Vance tag along but what they don't know is that Vance is a serial killer who murders anyone that offers him a ride.  He kills Chloe forcing Brooke to flee through the woods until she happens upon a home.  She enters the house where she meets an inbred family who enjoys killing just as much as Vance.  Not long after arriving at the home, Vance is able to track her down and a battle between the butchers soon follows with Brooke stuck in the middle.
     When I first received Killing Brooke I was under the impression it would be a revenge style horror film in the same line as I Spit on Your Grave.  If you asked my why I thought that I couldn't answer you but that was my impression of the film.  Now, after seeing the film I can quickly say just how wrong I was but the title doesn't really do the film justice either.  The acting in this one is solid with the exception of KT Baldassaro.  I want to follow that up and explain myself.  I can see that Kt has some on screen experience and can carry herself on camera but her "southern" accent is atrocious.  I've lived in southern West Virginia my entire life and never heard something that bad.  She was trying way too hard and the director should have stepped in and stopped that.  The remainder of the cast does an outstanding job and building their characters up on screen and making them entertaining.  The story for this one is one cliché after another.  There has been several horror, thrillers, and daytime drama following serial killers that kill those that pick them up while hitchhiking but there has never been one that combined it with an inbred killer family in the woods which is another cliché by itself similar to Texas Chainsaw Massacre and Wrong Turn.  This story, the killer hitchhiker was once paired with another type of killer in Larry Cohen's Pick Me Up which was part of the series Masters of Horror which explored the possibility of killers meeting face to face first but not to this extent.  With all that being said, the story does struggle to find it's footing.  The story has a hard time building credibility with the viewer once the two killers meet.  We expect more from a story when two slashers come together instead of the rather bland encounter we get.  Finally, the film does have some cheap effects and fun gags but they are restricted by their budget.  The kills are not that great, mostly consisting of slit throats, but the gags for the torture are fun when the camera works in their favor.  In one scene a finger nail is ripped off the finger but you can clearly see the manicured fingernail underneath once the effect was done.  Little things like that drag this down in one way or another.  Overall, Killing Brooke is a no budget indie film with a lot of heart but has a lot of obstacles to hurdle.  The film entertains but could have been so much more.

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