Monday, March 6, 2017

The Orphan Killer

Director - Matt Farnsworth (Iowa, Dying for Meth)
Starring - Diane Foster (Descendant, What WaS Lost), Davis Backus (Cannibal Flesh Riot, Priest), and Edward Winrow (Magic Rock, Echoes)
Release Date - 2011
Genre - Horror
Tagline - "True pain is screamless"
Format - Bluray (Personal Collection) (Screener)

Rating (out of 5):
     I never get requests to review movies except from the people involved with the film or releasing it.  However, several people has mentioned to me that I really needed to review the 2011 slasher flick Orphan Killer.  This was actually a movie I had already owned for several years but never found the time to watch.  A lot of my horror family loves the film and highly recommend it so I knew I would eventually check it out.  That got fast tracked recently when my friends over at Reel Gore Releasing put the film out on blu.  I had the old DVD release of the film and they were kind enough to upgrade me with the blu copy for review.  I want to thank you guys for allowing Horror Society and myself the opportunity to see the Orphan Killer on blu!
     The film follows Audrey (Foster) who is a music instructor who manages a singing group that sings at various churches and religious functions.  Her parents were murdered when she was a toddler and she found herself in an orphanage with her brother.  Her brother Marcus (Backus) witnessed their murder and it broke him psychologically and when his sister was adopted by the officer assigned to their case and not him he further plummets into the darkness.  Now he has a blood vendetta against his sister who left him all those years ago and embarks are a killing spree to make things right.
     Several fans of the Orphan Killer claim that it pushes the boundaries of horror while paying tribute to the golden age of slashers.  I can get behind some of that but as for pushing the boundaries of horror I have to disagree.  It may feel like ground breaking stuff if you only watch big budget horror or pop horror but for those of you that dive deep into horror's underground then you will not see anything new, groundbreaking, or even that disturbing to be honest.  The acting in this one is solid but no one stands out.  The cast shows a tremendous amount of experience and bring their characters to life.  The viewer really feels for them as the film progresses.  This is only possible with great writing and a great cast.  With that being said, I hated the killer.  David Backus is in one of my all time favorite short films, Cannibal Flesh Riot.  In the film he is outstanding.  He is one of the many reasons the film is so damn enjoyable.  However, in this his dialogue is horrendous.  He continuously spits out religious rhetoric and puns that completely ruins the atmosphere the film has painstakingly created.  I've been an atheist my entire life so no one can claim I hate this due to my beliefs.  I hate it because it gets old...quick.  The story for this one is sharp, quick, and simple but there just isn't enough for the film's running time.  There is a lot of bullshit filler scenes that truly needed to be cut.  If all the fat was trimmed and get scenes pertinent to the story then the film would have been so much better.  On top of that, the film's soundtrack is relentless.  I fucking love metal but the music is non-stop and does not play with the mood of the film.  It's like watching a movie unfold while on mute and your sitting in the middle of a Cattle Decapitation show.  Shit needs edited down some and more mood-centered music added.  Finally, if you want gore then you got it.  The film showcases several very impressive kills that makes great use of practical effects.  The kills are nothing original but they are ruthless in their execution which makes them very enjoyable.  The effects we do get are top notch and could possibly be award winning.  Sadly, they are encased in a film that is mediocre at best.  Overall, The Orphan Killer could not live up to the hype.  Many claim this film was ground breaking or extreme and, sadly, they are wrong.  The film offers up nothing new but does have some impressive kills.  The effects are outstanding but nothing I would call extreme.  In a world where torture porn can be found at Wal-Mart, horror films will need to do more than offer up bloody deaths to be considered extreme.  Hell, some of the deaths instantly put me in mind of the Friday the 13th film series which, as most of you know, is not extreme.  The film deserves a watch for the kills but has no replay value.

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