|Eve Of The War
|Satan's Little Helper.
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|Author:||uber Fenris [ Sun Mar 26, 2006 3:13 pm ]|
|Post subject:||Satan's Little Helper.|
This is a low budget film that was getting positive buzz on various American horror movie sites about a year ago. It's currently playing on the Horror channel, and I've seen it available to rent on the shelves of my local Choices video store.
I finally got around to seeing it last night, and was throughly impressed. It's a wonderful mixture of slasher movie, satire, and black comedy.
The plot revolves around a typical nine year old kid called Dougie, who's become obsessed with a computer game called 'Satan's Little Helper', in which you gain points by helping the Devil do awful things to people. Now it's Halloween, and when Dougie - in a homemade Satan's Little Helper costume - stumbles across a hulking psychopath dressed as a demon, he's delighted when the non-talking killer lets him assist in his murder spree, since he doesn't realise that the deaths aren't 'pretend'.
The film has 'future cult favourite' written all over it, and is the first film since the original Halloween to really take advantage of it's All Hallow's Eve setting: it's the one night of the year when men lurking about in costumes and masks don't cause alarm or even suspicion. This is best shown when Dougie first encounters the killer, who is happily dumping the dead bodies of houseowners on their front lawns in broad daylight, as people walk past in the misbelief that the corpses are just Halloween props.
Although it reminded me of several other films, Satan's Little Helper is - in it's own quiet way - a true original. It would make a great double bill with either Killer Klowns From Outer Space (1988) or Monster Man (2005). Or alternatively - to provide a slight contrast - American Nightmare (2002).
Mild Spoilers follow.
Amongst the film's many highlights are; Dougie's mother (playing by quirky character Amanda Plummer, always welcome) suffering attempted murder by clingfilm; the hero's heroine (the seriously gorgeous Katheryn Winnick, a Christina Applegate lookalike) spending almost the entire movie in a medieval serving wench's costume; a sequence in which two characters race to the rescue while dressed as a furry green troll and a giant canary; and a moment where a girl's habit of biting her nails almost has dire consequences for someone else. Then there's an astounding subplot (very brave, considering the current religious/political climate in America) where the killer ditches his devil disguise and appears as a different religious icon. I'll say no more...
Of course, no film is perfect, and some of the directing and editing is extremely clumsy in some scenes. The killer's behaviour mostly ranges from genuinely un-nerving to gruesomely funny, but sometimes he becomes too clownish. Most of the plot-twists are wholly predictable, and having reached an entirely satisfying conclusion, the movie promptly continues for a further fifteen minutes. But these are minor quibbles. Provided the same level of quality and originality was maintained, Satan's Little Helper is one of the few recent horror films that I'd love to see a sequel to.
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