Reviewed by: JimmyO
What's it about
After hearing about the death of a grandfather they never knew, three sisters find that they have an inheritance waiting for them. What they find is an old motel with some deadly secrets involving incest and murder.
Is it good movie?
When it comes to crazy inbreeds terrorizing teenagers who dig drinking and screwing, I’m all in. So when I heard a few negative reviews for Lake Dead, I didn’t listen. Besides, the body in the boat that haunts the DVD cover is pretty cool and I love them psycho’s living in the woods. But sadly, after taking a gander at the film, I’m afraid the naysayer’s are correct. This is a film with a bunch of pretty actors who are high on pretty, and low on much else. I don’t think it is necessarily the script altogether because I liked the basic idea, and thought some of the dialogue was kind of fun. But the three sisters who inherit their deceased grampy’s Lake Motel are all annoying in their own way. And when one of them, the alcoholic slut who was adopted, Samantha (Tara Gerard) decides to head up to the motel first, she finds that there are some really bad elements waiting for the girls. But thankfully, she is damn annoying so I say, good riddance.
As for the other, just as annoying, but actual blood sisters they fare a little better. I wish the same could be said for the audience. These cutesy little blond California types, are so painfully bland that I was hoping for their demise, I mean, they were like… Oh… my… God… like totally annoying! It may have been direction given, but the only time these two (Kelsey Wedeen and Kelsey Crane) showed some depth was when being chased. Again, I don’t necessarily think they are bad actresses, but they were way too chipper throughout most of the movie, especially in regards to the situation. In fact, one of the biggest problems in the movie is the lack of intelligence on anyone’s part. Whether it be the killers who are dumb as mud, or the survivors that really should have watched The Texas Chainsaw Massacre remake before going camping. Seriously, there is an entire sequence that is way too much like that film. I’m all for paying homage, but this was ridiculous.
I really wanted to like Lake Dead. Some of my favorite genre flicks are these backwoods thrillers like Just Before Dawn, The Burning, Wrong Turn and a few others (Do I really need to mention my love for all things Friday the 13th). While not necessarily great films, the whole lost in the woods with cannibals and/or psycho is just a compelling thought. And somewhere in this film is a really interesting story that could have been a kick arse film. In fact, one of the murders is so twisted. It involves a woman and a pipe being shoved through her ankles with the intention of making sure she doesn’t float. If this idea had been pursued, this may have been a damn creepy film. But alas, nothing felt all that terrifying aside from a few good chase moments in the middle section. But in the end, this is probably the weakest of the 8 Films to Die For that I’ve had the (dis)pleasure to watch.
Video / Audio
Video: This 16x9 Widescreen presentation is good. Too bad the movie isn’t.
Audio: The 5.1 Dolby Digital is also better than the quality of the film.
The Special Features include Miss Horrorfest Contest Webisodes. They include “Arrivals”, “Queen Mary”, “L.A. House”, “N.Y.C.”, “N.Y.C. Part 2” and finally finishes up with the contest itself. This is a reality show with chicks in black and fishnet. I’m not a big fan of reality television and this is a bit silly, as is the past winner and host Black Betty (who?). But it is harmless, fun times, with hot goth chicks. Although this is little better than those lame reality shows on the E Channel. I preferred Mistress Malice, I’ll leave it to you to watch who wins if you don’t know already.
I wanted to like Lake Dead. I love films of this ilk. But the complete lack of originality and the bland performances and direction leave much to be desired. In fact, when two of the characters kiss, it is such a ridiculously silly moment that I wondered why they didn’t just make it a comedy. It might have been more entertaining. Yet, we do get a gruesome bit of business and a fairly creepy possibility with one of the murders, but nothing ever matches the creativity shown there. I wouldn’t recommend taking a dive in Lake Dead.