Dir: Joe Bauer
Starring: Rita Artmann, Joe Bauer, Dryden Bingham
UK DVD – 26th October 2015 from Monster Pictures
Plot: A work retreat goes wrong when a masked psychopath starts to pick the employees off one by one.
The Killage is the first feature film by writer/director/actor/editor, Joe Bauer. Bauer’s vision in The Killage is a spoof of the slasher movie genre, much like Scary Movie. It picks on the tropes and clichés of the slasher movie all the while following those same clichés to reach the film’s conclusion. I went into this film knowing absolutely nothing about it, assuming that the title “The Killage” meant something along the line of a village full of killers, rather than slang term in the sense of “Whoa that’s some immense killage! It’s off the chain.”
Speaking of The Killage’s killage, it does an admirable attempt at the slasher movie ironic death. The stronger examples include the jock (creatively named Jock) being killed with his bar-bells. Bauer tries to match up each archetypal character with a fitting death but some characters don’t really fit an archetype, but also don’t really have a fleshed out character so they get killed with coincidental weapons such as the deck of cards that character was using earlier. The characters are so basic, cookie cutter characters. They are given a singular character trait and that is their whole personality, they are fodder of the weakest variety.
The film does manage to do a lot with what little budget it has. There’s some stand out stuff in their when it allows itself to be imaginative but that imagination didn’t stretch that far. Making fun of slasher movies for being formulaic and cheesy has been done to death. When Scream did it, it was calling out lazy film makers to step up their game. When Scary Movie did it, it managed to make every gross out joke possible. The Killage finds little new material to bring to the table. There was a couple of observational gags that hit the nail on the head but they’re in the minority.
As I said before The Killage follows the exact same clichés that it’s parodying and following that well-beaten path it feels like I’m being begrudgingly pulled along. The characters aren’t very likeable so this is another film where you’re just there to watch them die. That works for some people but I found it a bit tedious.
I can enjoy a good schlock-fest if it’s got something weird and fun about it, film’s like Gingerdead Man where the premise is so silly you just want to watch. The Killage however is like so many other films, trying to beat that puddle of blood and organs that once was a horse called Slasher movie parodies. If you enjoyed Scary Movie, and then Shriek If You Know What I Did Last Friday The Thirteenth, and you’re still hungry for more, The Killage is for you. Whatever you do, don’t get your hopes up for a film about a village full of killers, this isn’t it.