What’s this? An Indy horror with Tony Todd? Why, yes please. Such movies seem like they’ll be a real treat, but the problem is that quite often, when these amazing stars are gaining such attention for the movies they are in, the fact of the matter is that they don’t usually have much screen time. Much like the first time I watched Hatchet. I was excited when I heard that Tony Todd was in it, just to be let down when his all of five-minute tops scene was all I got (I still enjoyed the movie, mind you).
But hey, it’s a smart move nonetheless to get a big name actor to boost the chances of getting viewers, no matter how big or small his/her role. Which brings me to Dead of the Nite, a movie which spells “night” in a way I’m personally not too fond of, but whatever. The movie centers around a team of paranormal investigators who investigate reputedly haunted Jericho Manor. Spoiler alert: they all die in the manor!!
Hahaha, I kid of course. It’s not actually a spoiler. The movie decides to spoil itself right away by telling you that they all die. So it’s actually about a detective watching the found footage in an effort to figure out how they all died. Hopefully your eyes don’t get too bothered by night-vision green, because almost the entirety of the movie is shot that way. Every now and then your eyes get a break by going back to the police station and watching the detective being a complete asshole to his peers and randomly throwing shit like the video evidence around a room in a blind rage.
While the acting wasn’t really too bad for the most part, the performances are made irrelevant by the fact that almost all of the characters are either annoying assholes or dull and uninteresting. Tony Todd is, as you might expect, the best performer, but he’s in the movie all of 10-15 minutes, so that’s of no real help. I’ll give DotN this though; I didn’t predict who/what was behind the deaths.
Sadly, there’s not much to speak of in terms of blood, gore, or overall violence. Blood is minimal, and with one exception, only seen in night-vision. Stabbings and slicing with the sickle happens either just off-camera, or the killer’s body is blocking the actual point of impact. But then, the budget for the movie was very low, so I wasn’t too surprised by this.
The movie is billed as “Paranormal Activity meets Halloween“. While DotN doesn’t exactly meet the level of awesomeness of either movies listed, it’s actually somewhat accurate in that there are elements of both supernatural and slasher horror. So credit should be given for attempting to incorporate multiple elements and make it cohesive. Unfortunately, the end result is blah. If only the characters were people I cared about, that would have made a difference to me personally.
If you’re looking for a flick with ghost hunters and a lot of night-vision camerawork, go watch something like Grave Encounters. If you’re looking for something slasher related, go re-watch Halloween or something else. If you want to attempt a low-budget horror that squeezes in both, and/or you’re some kind of Tony Todd movie watching completionist, give Dead of the Nite a try, and see if you can gain an appreciation for it. Until next time, rest in peace.
Macabre Rating: 2 out of 5 tombstones.