Slasher House DVD Review
Written and directed by MJ Dixon
2012, Region 2 (PAL), 90 minutes, Rated 18(UK)
DVD released on 29th April 2013
Eleanor James as Red
Adam Williams as Nathan
Wellinton Grosvener as Charlie
Andrew M Greenwood as Cleaver
Alex Grimshaw as Thorn
Blaze Bayley as The Demon
Slasher House is a movie that looks like it was made for and by the employees of your local Gamestation. Maybe that comparison is a little too niche, but those familiar with both the recently deceased highstreet store and this British slasher might just be able to relate. If the pierced and dyed helpers of your local Gamestation were to star in a horror movie, you might expect it to be full of questionable acting, desperately low budget yet highly ambitious and packed with loads of over the top videogame influences. Slasher House, by newbie director MJ Dixon, comes good on all of these assumptions and if you’re a video game fanatic, you’ll probably love it.
Dixon’s story takes place in an abandoned asylum. The first reluctant inmate we meet is Red (Eleanor James), a mysterious vixen who’s named, presumably, after her fiery locks and impossibly smudge-resistant cherry lipstick. With no idea where she is or how she got there, Red must navigate her way through this seeming deserted madhouse like the feisty protagonist of a shelved Resident Evil game. Soon, she discovers the hard way that she’s not as alone as she originally thought. Having encountered the relatively normal Nathan (Adam Williams), an unseen force begins opening the previously sealed cell doors, allowing the hellish creatures within to run free. If Red and Nathan ever want to taste freedom again, they’ll have to fight off a handful of weirdo serial killers taken straight from the shadows of teen slasher movies and horror comic pages.
As the bodies hit the floor, we start to learn more about our unlikely duo and how they came to be trapped in this blood stained loony bin. For his key baddies, director Dixon creates some interesting, otherworldly and most importantly, cool characters that stick in your memory like a knife sticks in a gooey brain. Reports suggest that Slasher House was made for a measly £5000 and if that’s true, it’s damn impressive. Dixon serves up an impassioned horror that’s confident of style and tone. Drenched in a gloomy green light and peppered with inspired directorial flair, its tenacious-regardless-of-cash plot make it an undeniably impressive first effort.
However, like any debut movie it’s not without its hitches. The acting on offer is shockingly amateur and painfully wooden, casting a unintentional smirk across your face throughout its entire run time. In fact, it’s probably the scariest part of the movie as low funds often mean Dixon is forced to cut away in favour of some good old-fashioned suggestion - a perfectly acceptable directorial choice...if your cast is strong enough. The film’s revelatory climax will likely split audiences. Some will claim they saw it coming, others might be left ‘oooh-ing’ and ‘aah-ing’ in surprise and a few may be wondering whether Tim Seeley’s comic creation Cassie Hack is feeling a little pissed off. While an impressive feat overall, perhaps Slasher House would have been better suited to a format where acting’s not so important. A video game, maybe? Gamestation employees would’ve loved it.
Video and Audio:
Great. I had no problem with either.
There's a nice little selection of extras on offer here including a directors commentary, 'Behind The Scenes' and 'Unmasking The Slashers' featurettes, a blooper reel and two trailers.