Slaughter Night

[a.k.a. SL8N8]
Dir: Frank van Geloven and Edwin Visser
Star: Kurt Rogiers, Victoria Koblenko, Carolina Dijkhuizen, Jop Joris

This straightforward slasher from the Netherlands, doesn't bother with much in the way of explanations. The spirit of a serial killer stalks a mine, and needs eight heads (on sticks!) to escape from hell. Fortunately, he can possess visitors to the mine, and uses them to further his mission. Why did he wait 140 years to do this? Er... Like I said, this film doesn't bother with detailed explanation; not when there are pointy objects to be driven into bodies, people to be chased around the maze of passageways, and some of the wobbliest camerawork this side of The Blair Witch Project. No, seriously: Chris was left nauseous, in a way not seen since she vomited during Dancer in the Dark - and it wasn't the horror that was the cause, just epileptic cinematography.

That aside, there's very little new or original to be found here - simply being Dutch isn't enough, though I was amused by how the characters slip back into English when cursing; guess their own tongue must lack good swearwords or something. It has some energy, and while the film takes its own time to get going, once the ouija board comes out [yeah, like we all take one of those on our trips down mines...] and the killings start, there's little let-up - not least because the spirit can leap between bodies. Kill one host, it turns into mist and whizzes off down the corridor; how do you stop something like that? You'll likely have that answer before the characters here do, thanks to foreshadowing that's short of subtle. Undemanding horror fans will find this a passable timewaster, but even they won't be left with much to remember this by.

[The DVD is released through Tartan Video USA on April 10th, including a "making of" documentary, bloopers and the theatrical trailer. For more information, visit the Tartan Video website]

April 2007

Mine's a pint
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