Another Hole in the Head 2013: Day 3 – “On Air”

422OnAir_Still_14035Officially this was day six of the festival, but it was my day three. And were The Balboa Theatre not practically situated in the middle of the Pacific ocean I would have only showed up for the 9:00pm feature, a movie about a killer shark that was being presented on 35mm film by the same guy who made that movie about killer Dinosaurs. However, in not wanting to get home at 1:00am I only stayed for the first movie, a German import called On Air.

one-star2There’s a moment in this film when the killer asks, “What’s the worst thing you have ever done?”. Well, yesterday I would have to say it was not having the good sense to leave this film before the end credits.

Can this actually be a real movie? I feel like I just watched an entire movie made exclusively for characters already living in a horror movie world. It’s as if On Air were the movie two teenagers would have on in the background just before Jason Vorhees comes smashing through their window with a machete.

You don’t have to have met either Marco Riedl (director/writer) or Carsten Vauth (director) in order to know what they believe a good horror movie is supposed to look like. The proof is in the pudding, and in this case the pudding is an indigestible generic imitation of its delicious name brand counterparts. This coming from someone who loves pudding.

Borrowing ideas from those that came before you may be seen as the highest form of flattery, but blatantly stealing iconic sound designs, one-liners, and plot twists is a straight up crime and an insult to horror fans the world over. What were these filmmakers thinking? You can’t just lift the famous sound design from The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974) (see beginning of trailer below) and not think anyone will notice how bad your film is in comparison. Nor should you try to recreate the “Here’s Johnny” moment from The Shining (1980). Seriously, what good can come out of that? And while I’m on the subject of stealing – not paying homage to, as defenders of this mess will no doubt argue – how about the terribly executed an unoriginal plot which is all too reminiscent of the Saw franchise (2004 – 2010). In other words, a piss poor attempt at shocking an audience with several plot twists as to both the killer’s and victim’s location. Snore.

Not having an original idea is troubling enough, but c’mon, at least develop one of the damned characters so I can be as invested in the movie as I am my popcorn. Say what you will about the Saw franchise, at least there you can give a shit about either the victims or killer’s predicament.

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Categories: Another Hole In The Head, Reviews

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