The Town That Dreaded Sundown DVD Review
Written by John Colianni
DVD released by Image Entertainment
Directed by Alfonso Gomez-Rejon
Written by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa and Earl E. Smith
2014, Region 1 (NTSC), 86 minutes, Rated R
Best Buy Blu-ray exclusive released on July 7th, 2015 | DVD and VOD released on July 7th, 2015 | Blu-ray released on September 8th, 2015
Addison Timlin as Jami
Veronica Cartwright as Lillian
Anthony Anderson as Lone Wolf Morales
Travis Tope as Nick
Joshua Leonard as Deputy Foster
Andy Abele as Sackhead
Horror is an art form. What some see as gratuitous violence, gore and over the top scares, others see the beauty in ghosts, slashers and undead cannibals. While there tends to be something for everyone, the problem with most genres is over-saturation. When vampires, poltergeists and zombies all became popular, the comics books and films began to churn out. Unfortunately one of my favorite horror sub-genres has fallen by the wayside: slasher flicks. From Jason to Michael to Freddy, these names and many others taught teens and twenty-somethings to think twice about camping, drinking and premarital sex. Since then, masked menaces and supernatural boogeymen have all but disappeared, thrown out of the limelight by more marketable films that can cater a PG-13 audience. That is until I came across Alfonso Gomez-Rejon's The Town That Dreaded Sundown.
65 years after the original Moonlight Murders, the killings have began again. After witnessing the slaying of her boyfriend as they left drive-in movie of the original Town That Dreaded Sundown, Jami begins to research the original killer. As the town of Texarkana begins to relive the horrors of the past, a brand new generation experiences the terror of the hooded killer. Could this be a case of a copycat or has the masked phantom waited all these years to continue his slaughter?
The Town That Dreaded Sundown is a great modern slasher film for one main reason: it cuts out all of the bullshit that tends to surround a lot of horror falls victim to. There is a killer on the loose, there are victims of that killer and the motives are being discovered by the one person he decided to keep alive after an attack. The runtime is concise enough to not bore the hell out of audiences and to top off everything else, the gore and killings are awesome. There aren't many factors that go into this sort of movie, but if anything doesn't fit correctly, it can easily fall apart. Gore is just as important as killing the right cast members and throwing a plot twist into the mix. Alfonso Gomez-Rejon pulls it all off.
Horror is always changing. Whether fads are leading the charge or old faces are returning to reignite various fan bases, combining the right elements will always result in a great film. Heads don't always have to be rolling and blood doesn't always have to be squirting, but when it's done correctly, it allows audiences to keep looking at the screen without wanting to hurl into their popcorn. So if you're feeling a bit nostalgic but still want to be refreshed by a sub-genre that's been out of touch recently, definitely sit down with The Town That Dreaded Sundown.
Video and Audio:
The Town That Dreaded Sundown is presented in 2.40:1 widescreen and Dolby Digital 5.1, so if you've been missing out on those, get your fix. It can also be listened to in Spanish and if you want to read along there's closed captioning too. Science is an amazing thing.
There's a trailer. Wooooooo!