Shockers – Hatchet

Billed as old school American horror – sounds good to me. And it is indeed of the old school – that is of the slasher class of the 1980’s. It ticks all the boxes – teens in peril, nerd who turns out heroic, a couple of comedy middle aged characters and a bickering duo of soft porn actresses.

The film’s strength is in its sense of humour and well paced plot – it’s also heavy on the gore and although it often takes the blood and guts to an absurd level it never gets boring. Just like the films it is influenced by, Hatchet provides good, gruesome fun.

 

Hatchet is a goofy, gory gas that pays tribute to the slasher boom of the 1980s by placing more hapless teens in the path of an indestructible maniac. Said killer is Victor Crowley (Kane Hodder, Jason in many of the later Friday the 13th entries), a deformed Louisiana swamp dweller who returns from an apparent fiery death to lay waste to a mixed bag of tourists and Mardi Gras revelers who’ve wandered into his turf on a “haunted swamp” tour. Hatchet doesn’t exactly surpass the movies it’s spoofing; Green’s characters are dopey ciphers, and Crowley’s indiscriminate killing spree negates his sympathetic origins. But the dialogue is glib and the performances funny (especially Parry Shen as the tour’s unlikely guide and Joel David Moore as the lovelorn hero), and ’80s horror aficionados will appreciate John Carl Buechler’s outrageously gross effects (which get more screen time in this unrated cut). There are also cameos by genre vets Robert Englund and Tony Todd, as well as Joshua Leonard from The Blair Witch Project.

 

 

 

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