Friday, January 22, 2010

Plague Town - 1/5

Decided to watch this little independent film on a whim due to its pretty creepy cover and interesting story line. Unfortunately, past those two things, "Plague Town" did almost nothing for me. In fact, it did the opposite of what it intended and made me bored and rather uninterested with most of the film.

A group of family members (and one random new Brit boyfriend) decide to take a trip to the grass lands that their ancestry called home and in the process accidentally miss their bus home and then decide to visit a little town of fucked up people. Of course, whenever you meet a town of inbred yokels things are bound to get a little violent and perverse.

I had a lot of issues with "Plague Town". A lot is a little bit of an understatement. When I say 'a lot', I really mean A LOT. Essentially, sans a few good tense moments (The mom character in the car with the kid in the window for one) there wasn't a whole lot going in the right direction here. I could really go into detail here but I don't want to waste too much of your time nor mine on this. Let's make a list of why "Plague Town" should be avoided like the...oh that's too easy.

01. The Acting: Oh boy. Man, I'm pretty sure that I could have found my own small town of locals that could probably do a better job than this. Granted, I can't take too much out on our family members here as they have about nilch to work with in terms of dialogue and failed character development. It gets the job done, but far from anything worth it.

02. The Story: Is it me or has inbred killer children and backwood families been done before? Oh yeah, just a MILLION times. And "Plague Town" adds nothing new to the mix - perhaps some new make up ideas but that's my next point.

03. The Special Effects: Most of the members of these monster children look like "Evil Dead" rejects for demon possession. I understand that this is low budget, but then cut the number of them down please. The blood looked pretty good considering, but the make up work needed a lot more attention.

04. The Deaths: So if you have a cliche story, then you might want to include some sort of clever deaths. Oh, nevermind, they tried. A woman gets beat to death with a hub cap by a child. ARE YOU KIDDING ME? A for effort, but man, I'm pretty sure I wouldn't take that lying down. I would have to throw down first. Incidently, all of the deaths do try to be unique but end up inducing a "what the fuck" instead of legitimate horror.

05. The Score: Starts off nicely with its ambient and atmospheric tone but eventually ends up nowhere as it just kind of repeats itself the entire film. NEXT!

And finally, 06. The Editing: I don't know where to start with this. I'm no editing expert, but damn was this thing unintentionally choppy as hell and poorly constructed. Half the time I didn't know what characters were doing (partially cause of the script and poor acting) and moments seemed to randomly jump and focus on odd things. This was definitely the most frustrating aspect of this film.

So "Plague Town" ended up just plaguing the genre of Horror with tons of rehashed ideas, unoriginal concepts, and poor execution on most fronts. Half the time I wanted to laugh at it (seriously, you don't fight back against a kid killing you with a hub cap?!) but it was just too sad and depressing to really do that either. Going to go with a skip to you Horror fans out there. Don't bother. 

Written By Matt Reifschneider

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