“And you’re just a fuckin’ cow.” “A fuckin’ cow. That can fuckin’ talk.”

Monday, November 8, 2010 at 9:23 pm Comments (5)

Was roped into watching Shrooms. Okay, I exaggerate, my dad said he was keen on watching it and I didn’t really argue. It’s been a while since we’ve sat down and watched a film, and what better movie to get us back into the routine than a slasher flick set in Northern Ireland involving shroom addicts getting axed?

… okay, plenty of things would’ve been better.

No, I wasn’t terribly enthused by it. Basically, a bunch of American tourists and their handsome Irish guide go to the deep woods to pick mushrooms and get totally wasted, dude. What better way to set up fake-outs and jump scares than by having everyone coked out of their heads? Mercifully, only the first guy is of the guffawing and slack-jawed druggie archetype, while everyone else remains some degree of sense. After very ham-fistedly employing the “no cellphones” cliché (by claiming that having them when they’re high will just result in embarrassing phone calls. Boo hoo, grow a spine!) and dropping some very forced exposition on the “black-nippled shroom” and some story about a murderer in the woods, the girl eats the dreaded shroom and has hallucinations. Hallucinations of the future! More specifically, of people dying because of a hooded murderer, and she tries her best to try and prevent them from happening.

To be frank, I wasn’t very enticed. You could argue that a horror movie where everyone is doped off their skulls could have potential, at least so we could have some Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas style hallucinations, but aside from a show-stealing scene with a talking cow, the rest of the visions are just fake-out jump scares and some mildly blurry surroundings. At least the black-nippled mushroom acts as a reasonable excuse for why the leading girl has these visions – did the Final Destination series even bother explaining that? It doesn’t help that once their idiotic friend wanders off and gets killed, the movie just seems to lose any real drive, and the rest of the film is just the characters wandering around aimlessly, getting spooked and being silly. The characters have a spat that indirectly results in one of their demises later on, simply because that’s a horror movie staple. There are hillbillies with creepy attitudes who seem thrown in just because that’s another horror movie staple (Irish hillbillies! whodathunkit?), and blah blah blah.

I repeat, I was not enthused.

There’s also a ridiculous twist ending where, oh no, the leading girl was actually the masked killer the whole time! Given the obvious fact that everyone’s coked off their heads and some rather suspicious time elapsing, it is pretty feasible, but I just found it really dumb. I think in books stuff like this can be executed well if done correctly, but in a visual medium it requires a certain effort to make it believable. I mean, who’s to say there was a real killer, but the girl just imagined herself killing her chums? Sounds like a hook for Shrooms 2: Partners In Trippin’!

Please no.

Yeah, I thought it was a real slog. There’s a couple of decent chuckles such as the guy trying to hit thrown objects while blindfolded and the ever popular talking cow, but I really don’t have any good words to say about this. It’s not worth watching it for those two scenes because even at eighty minutes it felt drawn-out and unsubstantial, and as a horror movie it’s pretty darn lacklustre (though I’m not sure if I’d dub myself a horror movie enthusiast). I mean, I guess if you absolutely must watch another uninspired horror movie then there’s nothing stopping you, but really, it’s not worth it.

About the only amusing anecdote I can make about the movie is that the leading girl looks a lot like someone in my workplace. Spooooooky!

Today’s doodle is a gun-toting avian. With some kind of spiky tail, I guess. Man, don’t ask me.

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