It is no secret that the cost of making movies, and the advent of the internet have opened up new “under the radar” films into the film markets. One such film is Slasher.com, which takes its cues from meeting unsavory people in the online dating world – Sort of Tinder with a scary premise.
After meeting online, Jack (Ben Kaplan) and Kristy (Morgan Carter) go on a weekend getaway to the camping resort in rural Missouri. While hitting it off well, they soon find themselves in with some bad company. This film takes a laid back, slow boil approach to the mounting tension. Not exactly Alfred Hitchcock Psycho (1960)and more Rob Zombie’s remake Halloween (2007). Seeing this with a late night rowdy audience at the KC Film Festival was certainly a testament to the KC native Chip Gubera, who directed the film. I never understood why the redneck is such a popular trope in horror films, but that is probably due to the influence of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974). Evil rednecks have worked since the 70’s so the director took a horror stereotype, and built an entire feature around it.
The approach is inventive, although the title of the film gives you a large clue about the plot. An isolated backwoods far away from the trappings and safety of suburbia or city life is also the setting of about several thousand other low budget horror films. There is plenty of blood, nudity, and four letter words. The characters are just over the top enough to make you laugh several times, which undoes some of the tension. Some of the gore was a little silly, due to the budgetary limitations, but overall the film was effective in it’s tone. There were a few chuckle worthy moments, when a breast was exposed in a fight scene. This borders on the exploitation vibe of the 1970’s as well, but it doesn’t overshadow the plot.
The film is picking up several awards, and the director and cast are working on several new projects. It will be interesting to see where these brave actors and filmmakers end up in the next few years.