Beer, Booze, & Betrayal: MA (2019) Review

After moving back to her mother Erica’s hometown, Maggie is struggling with the fact that her mother is now never home due to her new job as a waitress at a casino. Though, it isn’t long before she becomes friends with a group of kids consisting of Andy, Haley, Chaz, and Darrell, ultimately developing a relationship with Andy. When the local drinking spot gets busted, they are invited by lonely local vet assistant Sue Ann (after she just recently bought the alcohol) to party her place. But eventually once Sue Ann aka Ma begins to get a bit too possessive and creepy, the friends begin to want to stay away. But as secrets from the past are revealed, Ma’s behavior goes from creepy to insane.

For starters, any spoilers you have seen in the trailer are pretty misleading, so rest assured there. The film was a lot more of a slow-burn than I was expecting, but despite this, it’s still a hell of a lot of fun. The pace the film chooses works as a representation of Ma’s sanity. When we first meet Ma she seems like a friendly enough woman, but as the film progresses her crazy levels grows, so by the time we reach the intense ending, Sue Ann has full-on lost it. The thing is, Ma isn’t your typical villain, there’s a more emotional core to her that becomes more revealed the more her background is shown and you genuinely feel sorry for her, while at the same time becoming freaked out by her and seeing her get what she deserves. This may make the viewer unsure how to feel, but it’s an interesting take on a villain.

Even more rare is that the teens in Ma’s crosshairs are actually pretty damn tolerable, likable, and feel very realistic. We are also treated to the lead teen Maggie’s mother Erica getting a lot more to do than being the basic mother character, other than one questionable moment, we also have a great and realistic mother/daughter relationship between them that isn’t just a dramatic screaming match between them. It’s really the other adult characters that aren’t given that much to do, especially Luke Evans’ character who actually has a pretty integral part to the story and is Andy’s father (we don’t even see the father and son together in any scenes). The biggest issues I have involve subplot involving what Ma is hiding upstairs that makes her forbid the kids from going up there. It’s not all out terrible or stupid, but it didn’t exactly feel necessary to the plot, and by removing it, we could have spent more time with the characters that weren’t fleshed out as much. The other issue is that it didn’t exactly utilize its R-rating apart from some nudity and language. Any violence we have could have easily been passed for a PG-13.

Those are really all the issues I had, but it didn’t make me enjoy the film any less, because the fact is, this is an extremely fun horror movie that has a great build-up, but also rides on the excellent performance by Octavia Spencer as Ma, who is not only having a blast with the part, but does such an amazing job showing the different layers and emotions to her character. The young cast in addition to Juliette Lewis as Erica also do a great job. For the stalker subgenre, this feels like a breath of fresh air. It’s not a full-on thriller on the levels of Fear or Fatal Attraction, not full-on campy like Obsessed or The Boy Next Door, it’s perfectly nested between the two and just a hell of a lot of fun.

–Cody Landman

Nothing But the Best: THE PERFECTION (2019) Review

Charlotte is a woman who was once a child prodigy as a talented cellist. But when her mother fell ill, she was forced to quit and care for her. Years later, after her mother’s passing, Charlotte returns the life she left behind to a party thrown by her old teacher. There, she finds that he’s found himself a new pupil named Lizzie. As Charlotte and Lizzie’s relationship grows, strange occurrences begin to happen.

This film a very tough one to talk about without giving too much away. Go in VERY blindly with this one in order to allow the surprises of the film to be more effective. This is how I went in, and I’m so glad I did. There are so many different layers to this film that it keeps you guessing of what will happen next and where it is going to go. Some parts are pretty grotesque, some are shocking, and there is plenty of intensity throughout to keep it engaging, along with the constant twists and turns. By the end of the film, you do find yourself asking certain questions, but much of these are more or less things you can form your own conclusion on.

More than anything this is a film where the ride to the final crazy and satisfying conclusion is worth taking. The performances by our two leading ladies (Allison Williams as Charlotte and Logan Browning as Lizzie) are great and are just as layered as the film itself and they nail every aspect because they completely and psychologically with the story and the characters they are playing. As of right now, this is probably the best horror film of the year so far. Once, again, GO INTO THIS AS BLIND AS POSSIBLE!

–Cody Landman

Superboy Horror: BRIGHTBURN (2019) Review

A couple who is unable to conceive, come across a baby who has seemingly fallen from the sky. They raise the boy as their own and name him Brandon. As Brandon grows older, he starts to develop mysterious abilities, but as his abilities grow stronger, the live of his parents, and the people of Brightburn find their lives in danger.

Brightburn is an evil kid horror film that essentially comes in the form of a re-telling of Superman/Clark Kent if Clark grew up to be evil. This is the film’s biggest strength. It tells a solid, entertaining, and original story for an evil kid film. Where it weakens though also lies in the script. The story is good, but the script is really rushed. We don’t much development or establishment of Brandon and his family, nor do we get much of Brandon and the people he encounters in town. We are only given bits and pieces. It would have been nice to see these relationships as well as the development of his abilities as the film progresses.

All of this said, the film still does entertain and gives us some nice gory scenes, and we also are given a pretty dark ending the feels like a punch in the gut in regards to a particular character, this all after a pretty intense final 20 minutes that slightly makes up for the lack of thrills we had prior. For a small budget, the effects actually look pretty well-done. In terms of acting, Elizabeth Banks turns in a fantastic performances as Brandon’s conflicted mother who feels torn between the love of her son and the obvious signs that something isn’t right with him. The rest of the cast does a fine job as well. Unfortunately, one of the most important elements of a creepy kid film is the performance of said creepy kid. Jackson A. Dunn’s performance as Brandon is extremely bland and lacking in the creep factor, this also doesn’t help the film in the creep factor either. Despite the rushed script and lack of thrills, the movie does set itself up for what could be a very promising series, one that I definitely would continue to watch for Brandon’s growing rise to evil.

–Cody Landman

50% Off Slasher Studios DVD Sale

As we get working on our latest horror feature script (more details coming soon), we thought we’d offer the slasher friends out there one last chance to get a killer deal on our first two features. Both DON’T GO TO THE REUNION and DISMEMBERING CHRISTMAS on DVD are now just $8 each or buy both for just $15 (that’s like buy one get one free)! This is the lowest price these films will ever be so don’t miss out on this killer deal. Supplies are limited! Sale ends on May 10th.




Conjuring Up Blandness: THE CURSE OF LA LLORONA (2019) Review

A recently widowed social worker, Anna, is investigating a case where the mother of two young boys is exhibit disturbing behavior by locking them in a closet insisting she’s protecting them from La Llorona. La Llorona is a legend of woman in white who drowned her kids in the river after her husband left her for someone else, and then killing herself. Now she seeks out new children to replace them, and if you hear her cries she targets you. Now Anna discovers her own children have been targeted and must do whatever she can to protect them.

The newest entry in the Conjuring universe ranks with the original Annabelle and The Nun as one of the weakest films in the franchise. We are given a very interesting story with a creepy legend and villain. Unfortunately there is very little substance to either of these things. While we do love seeing Anna fighting for her kids, as a horror movie, it’s very lame. The film and its villain are relegated to nothing but the same jump scares over and over, and La Llorona is relegated to nothing but lunging and screaming. This could have been so much better if it eased back on the jump scares and relied more on building suspense, intensity, and a creepy atmosphere. While The Nun was also a weak film, it at least built itself around trying to appear creepy and atmospheric. It also needed a lot more depth and emotional pull with the family that it barely scratched the surface with. Aside from the scares, we also are subjected to extremely cringeworthy humor from the spiritualist who helps the family. It also features one of the most frustrating and dumb character decisions I’ve seen in a horror film in a while, and I don’t care that it was a child, especially when said child knew they weren’t supposed to do this act but they did it anyway. All this said, the film’s biggest strength rides on Linda Cardellini as Anna. She seriously carries this movie on her back by emitting a good amount of emotion in her performance. She expresses the grief she feels of losing her husband, being a single mom, and now having to worry for her children’s lives and the fear of what’s now haunting them.

Overall, this movie was a huge missed opportunity in how they chose to approach this film but making it nothing but a jump scare film. And it’s unfortunate because Linda Cardellini puts so much effort into the role that the writers and producers should have put into the script and film, especially with a good story at hand.

–Cody Landman

Happy 6th Birthday, DON’T GO TO THE REUNION!

It’s time to celebrate a little slasher birthday party as our first slasher feature, DON’T GO TO THE REUNION, started filming 6 years ago this very weekend. It’s been a wild ride here at Slasher Studios and we cannot thank each and every one of you for the outstanding support! To help celebrate, for a limited time only you will receive a FREE 11×17 Slasher Studios poster if you purchase DON’T GO TO THE REUNION from Slasher Studios. We only have a select few posters left so make sure to get yours today!

Scott Rantzen (Brady Simenson) is a horror movie loving misfit who is teased by the popular students in school. When a date with the very popular and very beautiful Erica Carpenter (Stephanie Leigh Rose) backfires, he feels as though his life is ruined. Ten years later, the gang reunite for their class reunion. Little do they know that someone is waiting for them and ready to see that they pay for what they did. Is Scott back for revenge and will the old gang survive to tell the tale? It’ll be more gore for Class of 04.

Region Free DVD Extras Include
* Audio Commentary with the filmmakers
* Teaser Trailer
* Blooper Reel
* “Class of 2004” Yearbook
* Audition Reels
* Three Slasher Studios short films (Teddy, Popularity Killer, Blood Brothers)

Don’t Go to the Reunion

The Cat Came Back: PET SEMATARY (2019)

Louis, along with his wife Rachel, and two children Ellie and Gage, move to a house in the country where they discover they live near a pet cemetery. After the family cat is killed, Louis is told by their neighbor Jud to bury the cat in a hidden grave beyond the cemetery. The family soon discovers the horror that this grave can bring, and that sometimes dead is better.

The newest adaptation is Stephen King’s classic novel is a much more solid version than the 1989 version. While the first half does follow the same beats as the novel itself and the original film, it is the mid-point and the last half where it goes in a different direction. While the novel is still superior, I found that they changes and direction they took with this version was fantastic and gave new life to the story. It is because of these changes we are given much more intensity and more character development for the character of Rachel. When the mid-point twist occurs, it is so well-excecuted in how it psyches the viewer out of what is going to happen. It’s unfortunate that the tragedy is shown in the trailer but it’s still pretty effective. The change of the tragedy from the novel works just as good as the source material’s tragedy. It’s still sad, but there’s also more room given for the performance of the actor to offer more choking moments.

From there, the rest of the movie is balls to the wall crazy, and ends with a pretty terrifying final scene that the viewer is left having to imagine the horror that comes next. The intensity of the last half of the film makes up for the pretty dull first half. Despite the slower first half, it still seems like the family is a bit under-developed. The same is said for their neighbor Jud. It seems like he’s only present to present the graveyard, whereas he has a lot more presence in the novel. And it’s a shame because John Lithgow does a great job in the role with what we have of him. Along with Lithgow we are also treated to easily the best performance of the film by Amy Seimetz as Rachel. Seimetz brings in the emotional pull of the film and you really buy into the sadness and terror she’s expressing. Jete Laurence does very well too in the role of Ellie, whom also has quite a bit of material to work with. Sadly, it’s Jason Clarke who is the weakest link. He’s the lead but we don’t feel much attachment to him, and his overall performance often times feels wooden or trying too hard to show emotion or look crazy, but I guess he’s at least trying. The other con I could mention is that the cemetery scenes come off as a bit too hokey in how they play out the creepiness of it.

Overall, I didn’t love the film, but it is a much stronger adaptation of King’s novel, primarily because of the changes it made from the source material while still being faithful to the story its trying to tell.

–Cody Landman

Double Trouble: US (2019) Review

The film opens with a young girl attending a carnival with her parents, who clearly have tension with one another. The girl wonders off onto the beach where she discovers a fun house with a room of mirrors. It is there that she comes face to face with a girl who looks just like her. Years later, the girl, Addie, is grown up with a husband and two kids and are on vacation heading to her childhood vacation home. That night, four strangers appear outside their home and look exactly like them. The doppelgängers now seeks to torment and eventually the family who must fight back.

After the success of Get Out, Jordan Peele returns to the horror genre with this more straightforward horror film. While there is much to enjoy with his follow-up film, there was a lot of aspects that I really didn’t care for that pales it compared to get out. The best part of this film is that it offers us an excellent concept. On the surface we have the opposite/evil version of our protagonists who want to take and take over their lives. That itself is a pretty chilling idea. For those who want to dig deeper, there are different themes to unpack with it that also can add a sense of creepiness and real-life applications to the story, and that’s fine, and clearly what Peele is wanting people to do. The surface story story offers a couple of intense and well-orchestrated scenes to bring tension to the film. The initial home invasion being one of them, and a cat mouse game with the daughter being the other. Like Get Out, we do root for the protagonist to come out alive and we love seeing them fight back. However, I feel like they don’t do nearly as much with the horror elements as much as they could and seeing this family being tormented. A lot of this is due to some of the biggest flaws of the film. One such flaw being that the pacing is very long and drawn on out. There are times where it seems like they’re getting the ball rolling, but then it will halt with too much conversation and much of it feel repetitive. Towards the end I found myself waiting for it to finally be over, there never seemed to have a consistency in tone, which leads to my next issue with the film, and definitely the biggest.

Instead of keeping us consistently on edge, Peele has chosen to insert moments of humor that feel very out of place and unrealistic given their situation. The father and the children are making comedic comments that completely make it seem like they’re not worried about the situation they are in. At least Addie is consistently the one on edge but also in full protective mode to save her family. There’s also a moment in a character’s death scene where their Alexa type device named Ophelia is misunderstanding the character’s demands (for example, they ask Ophelia to call the police, to which Ophelia replies, “Okay, now playing “Fuck the Police”). This is something you would expect from a Scary Movie entry, along with the other jokes the film has. I’m all for comedy in a horror film, but only if it’s warranted, makes sense, and not over-used (I had the same issue with last year’s Halloween). Get Out perfectly used its comedy sparsely and didn’t over-stay it’s welcome, and it also perfectly balanced it and the horror, everything felt consistent and well-paced. Some of the comedic elements also came in the form of the sounds the doppelgängers make that are laughable more than creepy.

Finally, at the very end of the movie we are given a terrible twist that is so pointless, makes no sense, and just brings up more questions and plot holes than there would be if we didn’t have it. We do still have some questions left by the end of the film anyway, but nothing too frustrating. This is even after we have received two huge scenes of exposition of showing why the doubles are doing what they’re doing. What we don’t get (and what the most important aspect would be) are the “how” questions. Those are really the flaws I had with the film, which seems like a lot, but really it’s just the pacing, humor, and the final twist that I only had major issues with. Other than that I did enjoy everything else it had to offer. One other thing includes an excellent performance from Lupita Nyong’o as our lead playing dual roles, and it’s great watching these two sides of her. Now, people are saying she deserves an Oscar for this and she deserves to make horror history with it, but I think that’s kind of a stretch. She’s definitely great in the roles though. In addition we also have a very creepy and stunning score, and it’s very well-filmed, two scenes in particular stand out involving the murder of a family that is super well-done and then the fight scene towards the end.

While I do prefer Get Out as a horror film and as a film in general over this, and despite the issues I have with this movie, I would still recommend the movie just for the concept alone, Lupita’s great performance, and the intense moments we do have are great.

–Cody Landman

Lowest Price Ever! Slasher Studios $8 DVD Sale

For a limited time only, we have a killer deal for you slasher friends and this deal won’t last long! Our first two horror features on DVD are now just $8 each or buy both for just $15! This is the lowest price we have had any of our films so don’t miss out on this killer deal. Supplies are limited! Sale ends on March 25th.


“That’s My Purse! I Don’t Know You!” GRETA (2019) Review

After finding a purse on the subway, a young woman tracks down the owner and returns it to her. Discovering that the woman is pretty lonely, and having lost her own mom, Frances develops a friendship with Greta. But she soon discovers that Greta is harboring a twisted secret, and she’s not ready to let go of Frances.

Greta serves as a watchable, but also average and forgettable stalker flick. The biggest strength of the film lies in the cast. Chloe Grace Moretz, whom I normally don’t find a very good actress is actually very serviceable here. She captures the naivety and sincerity of Frances well, and she pulls off her fear and dramatic scenes without doing technique of over-acting like she typically does. Isabelle Huppert as the titular character is fantastic and brings the great amount of creepiness to her role with how subtle she can be. She does have her outburst moments that work well too, but it’s the lighter moments that are the most effective. And then we have Maika Monroe as the voice of reason as Frances’ roommate and best friend Erica. Erica is easily the most likable character because of not only being the sensible one, but she’s also the fun and pretty reliable friend, and she definitely has her bad ass moments in this movie. Monroe nails the comedic elements, and when she gets into defensive mode when she has to face Greta and defend Frances, you are hardcore rooting for her. This is ironic because you find yourself rooting for Erica more than caring about Frances, but this isn’t entirely uncommon for horror/thriller films.

The movie does feature some fairly intense and creepy moments, one being a chase scene involving Erica, and then towards the end when you find yourself worrying about the well-being of a particular character. Other than that however, much of the movie you’re mentally shouting at some of the characters for the poor decisions they’re making. Along with that it also feels tonally confused. Initially it comes off a more “serious” thriller, but lacking a lot of the thrills. And then at some points it switches gears to become campy and goofy, one scene in particular involves a dance that Greta does. This comes off as more as more comedic than anything and not in a good way. When it comes to stalker films you have two options, make it creepy and thrilling like Cape Fear, Fatal Attraction or Fear, or go full-on camp like The Boy Next Door, Obsessed, or The Roommate. You really can’t do both without making it look ridiculous. In all honesty, this was a rather dull stalker film that’s only backed by strong performances and just a couple of intense scenes, and it’s very well-filmed. The most unforgivable thing about the movie is the fact that it basically includes a dog that only exists just to have the “harm the pet” cliche. Which is not okay. And the fact that the dog is adopted by Greta, whom Frances helps select, is next on the pound’s list to be put down. Animal deaths like this are cruel enough in film, but under circumstances like this is just mean-spirited and senseless. Okay, rant done. By the end of Greta, it leaves us with an unsatisfied and ambiguous ending that makes you groan. And on top of that we have Frances’ father who becomes a prominent figure as the story progresses, but then he’s literally forgotten about with no real closure between them.

Overall, I’d say Greta is worth watching if you are into films like it. It’s not particularly thrilling, nor is particularly fun, but it’s a decent enough time-killer if you happen to find it on Netflix or want to rent it for two bucks at Redbox. It at least has the saving grace of solid performances, so if you’re a fan of the cast then I do highly recommend it in that case.

–Cody Landman