Another Hole in the Head 2013: Day 2 – “Blood Tokoloshe”

maxresdefaultHaving skipped Saturday’s screenings, what should have been my day three was actually my day two, and from what little I saw (once again, only one film today) it looks like I picked the wrong sunny day to be in a theatre. Man, what I wouldn’t have given to have this film encounter the same unplayable glitch that my fellow Bay Area cinephile Jason reported to have happen the day before. Granted, I only saw one out of the day’s four scheduled films, but the movie I picked to see was so bad that had there been more than a dozen people in attendance the entire South African region would have run the risk of being branded as a region incapable of making watchable films. Thankfully, most of the roughly twelve people watching this happen to be a lot of the same familiar faces that attend this and almost every San Francisco based film festival, which means that the small crowd on hand to see this pile of junk knows better than to write off an entire country after seeing something as terrible as Blood Tokoloshe. Why so bad you ask? And if you didn’t ask, I’m going to tell you anyway.

paper-star1You know a movie’s bad when the only reason you don’t walk out is because you want to get your money’s worth on the $5 popcorn you just bought. I suppose I could have walked out with popcorn in hand and have taken my buttery goodness for a nice Sunday stroll, but being that I have yet to take a theatre popcorn outside of its natural environment, and unwilling to see what happens if I do, I decided it best to see this one through to the end. Besides, I didn’t want to risk what would happen should I leave a theatre with their popcorn. Probably nothing bad at all would happen. I mean, why would it? Such thoughts are pretty dang ridiculous, right? Batshit crazy thoughts, even. But then again, you just never know. And it is precisely this sort of s(t)uperstitious thinking that kept me watching Jordon Harland‘s cautionary and sloppily put together rendering of the superstitious creature from Zulu mythology called the Tokoloshe. Damn you, popcorn!

The movie is about a man, Mthunzi, whose goal is to have lots of money and women. Rather than get a job and open an online dating profile at the local internet store he seeks the help of a witch doctor. The witch doctor does some witchy stuff, gives the man a butternut squash shaped vase, and tells him to dig up a corpse and dismember several of its body parts. Oh yeah, he also tells Mthunzi three very important rules to heed to or else bad things such as murder and inappropriate timed blood puddles will appear. Naturally Mthunzi becomes greedy and wants even more money as well as the girl who works at the internet cafe. So he stops following the rules and next thing you know, there’s a Tokoloshe monster with Predator like vision running around town killing people.

I’m all for non-professional actors in films, in fact it’s almost expected at an underground horror-themed festival. But having non-professionals shouldn’t and doesn’t always mean that the movie is going to be total shit. Here, the actors and the direction they were given were so bad it became laughable. A lot of the time the actors weren’t even looking at each other while saying their lines. It was as if each one was trying to out bad act the other.

Now add to that the look of the whole thing being shot on either video or a low grade digital camera and what you’re left with is a just a butt ugly movie. On the plus side (I feel like I should end this post on some kind of plus side), I was able to finish my popcorn before the movie ended.


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Categories: Another Hole In The Head, Reviews

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