Frankly, one of the weaker Lovecraftian remakes. The cast and acting is nice, but I really can’t get over the effects in this one. Yes, it’s a TV movie, so I should be forgiving, so I’m not saying it’s total trash and unwatchable. It’s sort of entertaining, but still – the comical green glowing and the tentacles just stand out as awful. Also, I’m super lazy today, so I just leave it at that.
Famous Last Words: Not every movie needs a remake.
This is what comes out if you crossbreed Jeffrey Dahmer, Carrie and the Overly Attached Girlfriend meme. It is not neccessarily a good thing.
There is Lana, Lara, Laura, Lorna or something, who asks Ben to go to the school ball with her, and learns that Ben is going with his girlfriend Holly, Molly or Hailey. This leads Lana-Lara-Laura-Lorna’s dad to kidnap Ben, play school ball at home for his daughter, and this results in the attempt to drill a hole in Ben’s head and boil his brain with hot water to make him “one of them”. “Them”, in this case, is Laura-Lorna’s mother (?), a zombie-like creature who apparently already underwent this procedure. And possibly the cannibal freaks living in the basement.
So far, so good. It’s not such a bad premise to have a deranged teenage girl creating a braindead homecoming king. However, this movie tries too hard to be smarter than such a story allows. It begins with Ben killing his father in a car crash caused by a bloodcovered boy standing on the road. This boy turns out to be the brother of the goth metal chick Ben’s chubby stoner friend takes to the actual school ball. And the son of the (seemingly only) cop searching for Ben after he fails to pick up Holly-Molly-Hailey. This subplot adds absolutely nothing to the story. Chubby Stoner and Goth Metal Chick add some awkward sex’n’drugs scenes that are irrelevant and not even neccessary to get a higher rating. The torture scenes involving Ben are perfectly enough to qualify this movie as something between mild torture porn and rape’n’revenge with a male victim.
The stupidity highlight reel shows Ben trying to escape by climbing on a freaking tree, and the kidnapper duo throwing stones at him until he falls down; the incredible coincidence of a perfectly functional flashlight just happening to be in the basement when Ben is thrown in there, and the rather random incest implications that just scream “we’re working down a list labeled CONTROVERSIAL THEMES”.
Famous Last Words: Nice try, but nothing more.
Promising idea – some mysterious scientist kidnaps a bunch of people who have to torture each other to release a certain amount of brain liquids that are only released when experiencing extreme pain. Though this does have the more interesting angle of torture porn – unwilling torturers doing what has to be done to survive – it sadly makes some big mistakes. First, the abduction of the group of friends is ridicolous. Instant K.O. perfume? Oh come on. Second, pretty much everyone is way too easily on board with “alright, let’s just torture this guy”. Third, despite a few characters standing out for having a personality, they are ultimately mostly forgettable and I couldn’t put a name to each face most of the time. And last but not least, the plot twist and… let’s call it the attempt of a classic rape’n’revenge ending, underlined the absurdity of the brain implants premise. The unplugging and collecting of the bottles was too unrealistic – up to this point, it was possible to suspend disbelief and not question the implants too much, and the torture, injuries and consequences were believable.
All in all, it’s probably one of the better movies in this category due to little time spent with building up the doomed characters, an acceptable death toll and generally moderate, realistic gore, but still stays behind the expectations.
Famous Last Words: Nothing special.
Christ on a bike, what a shitty movie. 80 full minutes with airheads: uninspired kills, inconsistant “story”telling with no logic or structure, acting on soap opera level, shaky camera to obscure the underwhelming effects, a pseudo-BDSM theme and painfully stupid cardboard cutout cliché characters.
Maybe I can’t appreciate dumb chicks in bikinis enough, maybe I lack of the ability (or desire) to even attempt to keep 5 near identical looking strippers apart, maybe I’m just jaded. But I simply can’t see any redeeming qualities in a movie where absolutely no-one notices that one of the various killers wears a handsome-human rubbermask over his Freddy Kruger pizza face; people apparently change their names at will, everyone has a surprise sibling and the attempt to make sense of it all in a wooden epilogue police report fails horribly by adding more “background” to random, previously unimportant “characters” than the first 76 minutes.
So, umm. Story. 6 strippers get hired to do a fetish movie in a house by a lake. Some dude is there as a host. There is some violence; some pseudo-reasons (“mutilation as artform”), much confusion who is who and why they are there and how they know each other; various other guys and possibly two or three previously never mentioned women and everyone is somehow the killer, related to the killer or the victims, of which most – disappointingly – survive. After all that, a failed “edgy” final scene of a girl going insane. Or whatever.
Famous Last Words: Someone misunderstood “torture porn” – it’s supposed to be a genre that treats violence like a porn film treats sex; exploitative, sensationalist, unapologetic and uncensored. It is NOT supposed to be a genre that has strippers, a lame fetish theme and is a pain to watch. And that’s exactly what “Experiment in Torture” is – could as well be titled “Experiment in Viewer Patience”.
In this movie, two of my favorite things in the horror genre come together: Jeffrey Combs and torture porn. What could go wrong? I don’t know, because “Would You Rather?” did everything right.
Iris has a brother in need of a donor organ and a lot of debt, which is why she agrees to the strange offer an associate of her doctor makes: She can participate in a “game” played on a diner party of his “foundation”, if she wins, all her problems will go away. For similar reasons – mostly, crushing debt – an illustrous group of seven other people also accepted this offer. It soon turns out the game isn’t as harmless as they thought, as the excentric millionaire enjoys making people do horrible things to themselves and other players.
Perfect premise; the tension is always better if normal people do awful things to save their skin than a deranged psychopath who does awful things just to be a deranged psychopath and “because”. The 8 victims have distinctive personalities, different strategies and ideas of survival and team spirit and the likeable ones are actually likeable. I’m not quite sure where they were trying to go with the doctor’s attempt to save Iris, or the jerk son’s existance, but those are minor issues and easily overlooked by the well-paced “game rounds”.
Famous Last Words: Excellent, not overly gory, yet delightfully unsettling torture porn – recommended.
So not the entire box of unwatched DVDs is complete trash… After the mostly painfully stupid movies of the last days, “Gag” is quite solid torture porn. Not much of a story or any substance or depth – two guys break into the very wrong house, a deranged psychopath’s torture lair – but I expected neither. The main character, Tony, doesn’t act like an idiot; the killer gets creative with awful ways to end his victims. Not much else to say, this was an enjoyable movie. No genre highlight, but far from a lowlight either.
Famous Last Words: Simple, to the point, recommended.
Hard to believe how boring a movie about plastinating people alive can be. Well, “plastinating” with wax, but you get the idea. The group of twenty-somethings is flat and mostly not even twodimensional, and you spend much more than 20 minutes with these jerks before anything at all happens. It sure doesn’t help that one of them is “played” by Paris Hilton and if you think “well, at least I can look foreward to her death”, you will be disappointed. She dies, but it takes a long time and isn’t too spectacular either. The level of stupidity in the first 2/3rds of the movie is around “not stupid enough to facepalm or care”, but it gets massively cranked up toward the end.
Have you ever found it stupid if screaming victims run up the stairs to escape the killer? Yes? Well, try running up the stairs in a house entirely made of wax that is on fire.
Famous Last Words: What a waste of time.