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HORROR DVD/BLU-RAY REVIEWS

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SOMEBODY HELP ME
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Reviewed by: Dave Murray

Directed by: Christopher B. Stokes

Starring:
Marques Houston
Omari Grandberry
Brooklyn Sudano
Alexis Fields

Movie:  
star star star
Extras:  
star star star star
Overall:  
star star star star
What's it about
Four black teenagers head for a cabin in the woods for a birthday party (I'm bored already). Then all of their friends (who just happen to be white kids) go missing. After doing a little searching, and some bitching by a racist girl who doesn't seem to care that her friends are missing, they finally call the sheriff. After that, it's just the guys who have to save everyone else from a crazy duder who is cutting body parts off of their friends for no apparent reason. And this, my friends, is a lesson on how to completely fail at making a horror or thriller, or any kind of decent movie at all for that matter.
Is it good movie?
First off, this movie annoyed the hell out of me, and by the end I felt not only abused but insulted. This release by Code Black Entertainment is a strange one, because by releasing what could possibly take the prize as the worst horror movie ever made is in contrast to their track record, which from what I can see is pretty good so far, with some quality titles and some decent talent. But this movie is an insult to the intelligence of their core demographic, and to movie audiences in general. If the flick had had a decent script not filled with basketball sized bullet holes, and had actors with even a smidgen of talent, and been shot or lit or edited with any kind of skill at all, it would have been an okay movie. The thing is, it tried to be two things. It tried too hard to be a hip and modern teen slasher/thriller, and it tried even harder to be a more 'urban' offering in the whole Eli Roth inspired "torture horror" insipidness. Sadly it failed on both counts.

The first thing on the cutting block is the acting, since I was subjected to it for 100 minutes and I'm not happy about it. The two male leads (Omari Grandberry and Marques Houston) are so wooden and uncharasmatic that you wouldn't want to see them doing anything, let alone carrying a whole movie. One of the girls in the flick (Brooklyn Sudano) didn't really do much, but when she got captured by the old white madman and she started whining, it took every ounce of my resolve not to hit the stop button. But the biggest offesive insult comes from Alexis Fields, who plays a character who is so blatantly racist that she makes you want to puke. Every second line out of her mouth was a derogatory comment about white people. I despise racists, no matter what race they are or what race they are insulting. What surprises me is that the screenwriters and director actually thought this was okay to put into a movie. I guess this is their response to the cultural racism that we see in period movies these days. But those movies are representing a time period marred and characterized by social stereotypes, not like this movie which is just giving voice to another ignorant teenager. That sort of writing in modern cinema is reprehensible and repulsive. Let's tally some of it up, shall we? The kids are driving into town, first meeting the old white sheriff (who, being white, must either be the enemy or someone not to trust), then their creepy old white neighbor (who, being white, must either be the enemy or someone not to trust). Strangely and against character, all of their party friends are white, and then when all of the white kids disappear, no one seems that disturbed by the fact the six fu*king kids just vanished! And after the racist girl goes on about how they all just got lost because they were nothing but dumb white kids, the Sheriff asks for a description of their friends, to which Ms. Bubblehead indignantly pipes up "Um, they're White"! Yes, this movie is that blatant. But I get their purpose here, which is apparently to avenge centuries of racial persecution with more racism and hamhanded attempts to bash Whitey at every turn! That's sad, man.

Story wise, this dead dog moves at about the pace of ninety year old bowels without the natural benefits of fibre, and has enough plot holes that even the most discerning audience will be left scratching their heads and cradling their balls after the insulting kick this movie delivers. I mean, seriously, what was this crazy guy doing, other than using a ball gag that didn't fit into anyone's mouth (and hence would just fall off...useless mail order ball gag!) and cutting off random body parts without that much blood at all (although I did like the whole scalp removal scene). The screaming of the 'victims' just becomes annoying after about three minutes. The kids make some of the most stupid decisions I've ever seen in a movie. There's no nudity, despite the fact that these kids came to the evil white woods to drink their undies off and get freaky (I thought this was supposed to be teen slasher). They go out to look for their friends, come back to the cabin, attempt to leave town...then repeat the process three more times! And why is the uncle who owns the cabin named "Charles Bronson"? Of all the classic movie references, why this one? My head is starting to hurt. The flick is shot competently enough, but it's a little too bland and generic for my tastes. The visuals were ho-hum ad quite boring. In essence, there was nothing to take away from this one except for a hangover and another hit to the ulcer. And what the hell was up with that annoying walking dead blond kid who kept singing 'ring around the rosie'? What purpose did she serve? Why that song? Give me some answers please! If she was supposed to be creepy (ala the little girls in The Shining or the jump rope kids in Nightmare On Elm Street) then they failed miserably.

I could go on and on about how this movie sucks, but really what's the point. You'd think that a movie by the director of You Got Served and House Party 4 would make a more watchable movie (wait a second...both of those were horrible too!), but this attempt to cash in on two current horror trends is just plain bad, and not in a laughable way. It's boring, trite and insulting to anyone with the basic level of intelligence needed to keep breathing. But then again, maybe the world needed another shitty movie that will forcefully require a lot of alcohol to erase from my memory. Do yourself a favour, ignore the DVD copy that compares this dog turd to Cabin Fever and The Hills Have eyes, and just don't watch it. You'll thank me for it later.

And just out of curiosity, would the writer/director please reassure me that the racist chick was hauled out behind a cabin after the end of the 'story' and put out of our misery? Please?
Video / Audio
Video: Letterbox - 1.33:1.

Audio: English (Stereo Plus 5.1).
The Extras
Not much to write about feature wise. We get 12 Deleted Scenes, which is pretty much more of the same crap we saw in the movie. Don't bother. Besides, why would you want to torture yourself more. We also get a pretty lame Blooper Reel, that lets us know that these kids are just as wooden, unlikeable and phonetically challenged as we saw from the movie. Kids these days, I swear.
Last Call
With a crappy story, a derivative and boring premise, almost zero gore and nudity, shitty acting, generic directing and cinematography and a whole lot of racist remarks, was there anything to like about this movie? Were there any redeeming qualities at all? Nope. None. This is not how you cash in on current genre trends, guys. It looks like there was some money behind this flick, so they should have at least made a passable thriller, but no dice there either. This foray into 'urban' horror is mindless, boring and ultimately insulting on a level I've never known before. Code Black should stick to their usual fare and stay away from horror. I'm sure Christopher B. Stokes is capable of better shite than this. Or at least, I sincerely hope so, because you can't get much worse than this. Avoid this like a cocktail of all of the plagues and diseases in human history!
ARROW IN THE HEAD'S RATING SYSTEM
star star star star I'D BUTCHER MY FAMILY TO SEE THIS AGAIN
star star star HANG ME BUT I DUG IT A LOT
star star AN OK WAY TO KILL TWO HOURS
star JUST SLING AN ARROW IN MY HEAD AND LET ME DIE IN PEACE

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