suburbanite_large_800

SUBURBANITE

•             RELEASE DATE: Available on DVD January 12th
•             WRITTEN BY: Andy Lohrenz
•             DIRECTED BY: Andy Lohrenz
•             STARRING: Frank Mosley, Nicole Leigh, Susana Gibb

The box for the upcoming thriller SUBURBANITE claims “Reminiscent of Tarantino’s RESERVOIR DOGS”. I predict in the next few paragraphs I am going to reveal that this is massively untrue, as any time something is compared to a Tarantino film it usually has about as many similarities to the man’s work as a taco does to a baboon’s testicle. Still, I beseech thee, film: do not f–k me over… please be entertaining, or at minimum watchable.

When your ultra-average suburban dude goes night-night behind the wheel and commits a lil’ vehicular homicide (granted, the guy he hit was raging drunk in the middle of the road), he decides the best thing to do is cover that s–t up pronto. Well, that seems easy enough… until the guy he hit wakes up!

Remember in the review for PAINKILLERS you read countless seconds ago when I mentioned that film had a case of the cheaps? Well, this one does too, except they make it work like nobody’s business. Most of the film takes place in a garage, and within those close confines, some psychological games are played masterfully.

The main area this film excels is in its copious dialog. Well written and complex, the dialog drives this baby and offers nuances and layers to both characters that makes you question just who you should be rooting for—and yeah, I concede it’s kinda like RESERVOIR DOGS in that respect, if not in subject matter.

Bottom line, this is a low budget flick with a strong script and great performances. If you like watching s–t slide ever south in an atmosphere of ever growing tension (like my relationship with my readers!), then this is the film for you!

12231595_10204978450041647_571428633_n

silent-retreat_med_400

SILENT RETREAT

•             RELEASE DATE: Available on DVD January 12th
•             WRITTEN BY: Ace Jordan, Heather Smith, Taryn Stenberg
•             DIRECTED BY: Ace Jordan
•             STARRING: Donny Boaz, Rebecca Summers, Danilo Di Julio

Well here it is, creeps: the obligatory woods-set shocker. No column of yours cruelly would complete without one. I swear, I should just invest in a patch of wooded land and rent it out to low budget genre film makers. I’d be buying a solid gold house within a week from the return on investment on that one. Anyway, let’s look at SILENT RETREAT.

What happens when a group of attractive young folks hole up in a secluded lodge, that just so happened to be a mental institution long ago, for a corporate retreat? Well, for the first hour they talk. A lot. But of course things do get rather murder-packed eventually (‘cuz this is a fright flick after all), as someone starts picking off our gang o’ goofs.

While that description above sounds neither original nor enticing, I have to tell ya, this lil’ flick was pretty good! The aforementioned jaw-session goes a long way to making the characters a bit more rounded out then yer average slash-a-thon. You may not like all of ‘em, but dammit, ya get to know what makes ‘em tick. This makes things a bit heavier when the red sauce gets splashed around, i.e. you actually feel like real people are meeting their demise rather than your stock cardboard stereotypes (the jock, the nerd, et al.). Plus, the fact that there is a mystery to unravel keeps things engaging enough.

While not the scariest or goriest flick around, it does provide some thrills and has a solid enough story and acting. Another plus is that towards the end of the film, a character flashes a s–t eatin’ grin so amazing I laughed for a solid 5 minutes… so worth it!

12226582_10204978450121649_1624674795_n