Last night I went to the premiere of Somebody Help Me, a film that you- yes, you- can catch on BET on Halloween. Won't that be just like we're hanging out? Yes, it sure will! And if you miss it on Halloween, the DVD will be available on November 13th, and you can watch it anytime you want. Anytime, 24/7.
Now, would you want to watch Somebody Help Me 24/7? That, my friends, is another issue entirely.
While the film was enjoyable on some level- there was a bit of gore, it was shot well, and the acting was better than most straight-to-DVD fare, it was so riddled with cliches that it almost bordered on straight-faced satire. Group of friends heading off to a cabin in the woods? Check. Stabbing the killer, then dropping the knife and walking away? Check. And so on and so on.
Not that I necessarily have a problem with slasher tropes, as you should know by now. There's got to be something added to those tropes- something fresh- that makes the familiar seem a bit unfamiliar. I suppose that 'something fresh' might be the sort of "urban" approach; as you can see, the leads are all African-American (every one else in the film is white, however), and ...umm...some sort of hip-hop music plays during the obligatory "driving through the woods" scene. Beyond that, the film plays out like most every other 'weekend getaway' scary movie you've seen.
Of course, this being the post-Hostel era of horror filmmaking, writer/director Chris Stokes has included some torture scenes. Gone are the days when Jason Voorhees can simply make with the stab-stab; now he'll have to tie people up and slowly cut their ears off to compete.
If you're looking for a bit of competent same-old, same-old, then check it out. I'll just say that the highlight of the evening for me was seeing Tootie on the red carpet, and I'll leave it at that.
I'll add, however, that Somebody Help Me was 536987841205383 light years removed from being the worst film I saw last night. That honor, my friends, goes to BloodRayne II: Deliverance.
Now, we all know that the first BloodRayne kind of made me want to kill myself. Why oh why, then, would I go back for a second helping of cinematic punishment? Who knows? A bit of curiosity...a bit of "blogger obligation"...a bit of masochism...a bit of it was midnight and I wasn't completely aware of what I was putting in the DVD player...
Somehow...somehow...BloodRayne II is so bad (Natassia Malthe as Rayne or no Natassia Malthe as Rayne) SO BAD, I tells ya...that it has me changing my opinion of Uwe Boll's first attempt at bringing the character to the big screen. Yes, the first film was better.
I should have known BR II would be a travesty (well, I guess I knew before I pressed play, but dammit, I give everything a chance!) when the first character to appear onscreen utters something like "Ah, the 'wild west'!"- did people on the frontier refer to the west as "wild"? Maybe, but I doubt it. It was sort of like coming on screen and proclaiming "Ah, here I am in olden times!".
In my opinion, Uwe Boll's biggest crime is that his films are simply boring. He delivers on the gore, he occasionally has an interesting shot set up, but then there's way too much talk and not enough do. And when the talk is nonsensical and pointless, it's a deadly cocktail. I swear to you, 45 minutes in I said to my roomie "Something has to happen in this movie..."; then, at the 77 minute mark, I said "No, really- something has to happen in this movie, right?"
And it just never panned out. Vampires in the old west, meh. Okay, if you can make that interesting, I'll go with it. But it wasn't interesting. BloodRayne herself was so bland that the film could have been called...oh, I don't know...Judy II: Deliverance and it wouldn't have mattered. There are a few gunfights, and that's about it. I sighed the sigh of a world-weary viewer, the sigh heard 'round the world.
The good news is, Boll is already talking BloodRayne III. Yes, I'll see it.