DVD/Blu-ray Reviews

Lake Dead - DVD Review


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</script></div>{/googleAds}Just in case you didn't know, getting a film made is kinda tough. Even getting in the door to pitch your ‘brilliant idea' is a tall order. When you begin down that road so very, very often travelled, you're told that although it's choked to its edges with those trying to get a shot, if you're idea is coherent and adheres to the formats and conventions Hollywood/The Independents recognise as professional, then you're in a small number and on your way... well sometimes they sleep at the wheel.

One of the several ways people on the fringes start making it a bit further down that road is by making films short and feature length and showing them at festivals. In the realm of horror, the 8 Films To Die For Horrorfest is one of the newer festivals, but is quickly building on its reputation, releasing 8 feature length films a year to the hungry horror masses and soon after to DVD.

Lake DeadWhile this reviewer could not avail himself of the festival, being that he's half way around the world, and has only been given one of the eight films delivered in 2007's line-up, if Lake Dead is an indication of the quality last year delivered, then it's no loss.

Debut director George Bussudo's entry is Slasher film, telling the story of three sisters, who are willed an isolated motel by a grandfather they never knew they had. Of course, all is not what it seems, and their good fortune quickly takes a turn down the ‘hot people get messed up and butchered alley,' where family secrets are revealed and the motel ultimately doesn't seem like such a sweet gift after all.

First, let's give some credit where credit is due, because there really isn't much in the way of positive stuff I can deliver. Bussudo is not a bad director, and there are rare moments of flare demonstrated, especially early in the film. Next, and again in rare moments, the cinematography delivers the odd impressive shot, considering a very low budget... AND, they made a feature film that is an accomplishment in itself... yup, that's about all for the nice-nice.

The story, actually even just the simple premise, is about as logical as putting your genitals in a meat grinder. There are more plot holes throughout this crap than pretty girls and boobies, in fact saying this has a plot is being generous. This film robs shamelessly from everything ranging from The Texas Chainsaw Massacre to Deliverance to Friday the 13th, and does it all badly. It plays like a retarded patch-quilt of eighties knock-off horror movie scenes.

The characters are moronic, undeveloped and ridiculous to watch, listen to, and in short order, endure. The dialogue is laughable - if these actors have any talent at all, then it serves only to rob them of demonstrating it.

The editing is abysmally bad, and robs the director from showing some good work, so many times this reviewer lost count. As mentioned before, the cinematography shows the odd wow shot, but all too often sways haphazardly between handy-cam weekender aesthetic to just plain bad. There is no sense of timing with supposed scenes of tension; the pacing is as unfocused as an ADD kid of his meds, and as a whole the entire production can be boiled down into two words: inconsistent and sloppy.

Give this garbage a miss, and hopefully one of the other seven may redeem 8 Film's To Die For's 2007 offerings. Because if they're not any better, they may have to change next year's slogan to 8 films To Die Before.


Component Grades
Movie
DVD
1 Star
2 stars
DVD Experience
1.5 stars

DVD

DVD Details:

Screen Formats: 1.85:1

Subtitles: English; Spanish.

Language and Sound: English: Closed Captioned; English: Dolby Digital 5.1

Other Features: Color; interactive menus; scene access.

* Webisodes:
o Miss Horrorfest Contest Webisodes

Number of Discs: 1 with Keepcase Packaging

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