Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Simon Says

Occasionally, you run across a movie that is so bad, you wonder if it is supposed to be a satire, and the filmmakers forgot to include the funny. Although the movie stars Crispin Glover (The Wizard of Gore remake), an interesting actor who is worth watching in almost anything, this was a painful 84 minutes to sit through.

Five dim-witted teenagers go camping while on spring break, in order to prospect for gold. No, it doesn’t make sense. Their destination seems to be the West, since that’s where the gold is, mostly, and because they have a scene at a (very inaccurate) tombstone of Billy the Kid. You keep waiting for Billy the Kid to have some relevance to the movie, but forget it. While at the cemetery, a ghostly woman on horseback materializes and points at the kids, then vanishes. Again, you would think this had something to do with the movie, but, although it recurs at the end, nope.

The locals also speak with the worst fake Southern accents in movie history, making even John Travolta’s accent in The General’s Wife sound good. No kidding, the word “bad has seven or eight syllables when they pronounce it. Anyway, Glover plays twins Stanley and Simon. Simon is supposed to be mentally retarded, but Stanley isn’t exactly a brainiac, so it’s hard to tell them apart. One of them may or may not be dead. This is played as an important plot point, but trust me, you won’t care. One of the twins murdered the rest of his family years ago, but was released because he was crazy, which is just nuts.

The insipid, irritating, forgettable teens make it to the woods, where Simon/Stanley starts killing them with a series of impossible Rube Goldberg gadgets, all made using pickaxes (because it’s a mining area, I guess). My favorite is a giant contraption that looks like an artillery piece, in which Glover sits and aims through an artillery sight before firing a barrage of pickaxes at a running moron. Glover supposedly kills people for not saying "Simon Says" although mostly it doesn't have anything to do with it.

With the exception of Glover, there is no one in the cast I’ve ever heard of, and no one else stands out. About half the cast has the last name “Lively” and so does the producer, so I assume it is some sort of family employment program. The director is best known for Harry and the Hendersons, so maybe not the best choice for a slasher film. There is also a graphic and unfortunate death of a dog, whose character seemed smarter than it’s human counterparts.

So you should watch this movie if…hell, I don’t know. Maybe if you’re a relative of someone involved in it? It does have some beautiful nature photography, so there’s that.


John Hornor said...

I have a request. I'm in the mood to watch some good horror movies in the days leading up to Halloween.

Can you give us a breakdown of some of the best NEWER movies we might not have seen yet that are out on DVD? The Netflix Halloween List for 2009 so to speak.

KentAllard said...

Your wish, my command. I'll have such a list this week.

Wait, you're sayin' you aren't inspired to watch Simon Says?

KentAllard said...

Also, the next couple of movies I review will be newer movies I liked.