I swear sometimes marketing is everything. I don't know, perhaps its the fact that I watch and review a lot of movies, but I find most movies can be pigeon-holed into different categories, and despite the fact that I genuinely never get bored of the horror genre, I know what to expect from each 'type' of movie even before I have gotten into the movie. Botched appeared to me as a type of comedy horror, but more mature than that of splatter, perhaps akin to 'Severance' and 'Sean of the Dead' in terms of being a little more mainstream orientated. The presence of Dorf in the cast certainly seemed to support this, and to begin with the plot and comedy certainly worked together in this way. But...
Well first let me begin with the plot.
After failing the Russian Mafia once 'Richie' must make amends by stealing one of Russia's most treasured possessions, the cross of the first Tsar. Once inside, things go wrong, and before he knows what has happened Richie and his unstable and incompetent brother have began cancelling people and they are forced to take hostages. Fearing capture from the alerted police they, and their hostages are forced to take refuge in an seemingly abandoned upper floor. Soon they realise they are under more threat from an unknown assailant forcing both criminals and hostages to work together to survive.
The plot certainly strikes a balance between plot and pace, excelling in each area. Sure the plot isn't desperately deep but its interesting and forces a range of characters together so that it feels natural rather than materialised, and the pace flies by, one thing this movie never gets is boring!
To begin with the jokes are pretty clever, some dry humour mixed in with irony and sarcasm; it was right up my street, all supported by a good cast.
I was already enjoying it a lot and by the time the first hint of gore came. Sure I had heard that the movie was supposed to be pretty gory, but naturally I was a little dubious. I was pleasantly surprised, although I'm not going to join the hype and label the movie as a gorefest! The first kill is probably the most gory of the movie where we see young guy get his hands cut off by a pair of garden sheers reminiscent of those in 'The Burning'. The effects are pretty good, not terribly realistic but plenty bloody enough and the camera work is ballsy enough to show the actual severance. The gore continues pretty much throughout the whole movie with varying intensity. In all cases the effects are more bloody than gory, and more comic than brutal, but in each case credit should be given to the imaginative ways in which the characters are dismembered or maimed.
Sadly, and it was more disappointing than a massive negative, the movie does loose consistency around the 50 minute mark when the killers identity is revealed. What a let down, not only is the killer a pretty stupid one, the film itself seems to embrace this rather silly change of atmosphere and becomes immature pantomime slapstick. Here we see lots of stupid one liners and people running around in comic fashions down corridors being chased in 'scooby-doo' fashion. The film continues in this vein right until the end making some scenes pretty cringe worthy to watch. Its a shame.
Overall, and relating back to my opening paragraph, this movie begins as a mature, mainstream, but witty tale and deteriorates to a cheesy and tactless slapstick which has the feel that it is taking the piss out of itself a little, not doing itself any favours at all. Credit must definitely be given for the first half of the movie, as its really enjoyable to watch with some really great moments, but sadly, the ending kills it. Some people might be able to accept it but the U-Turn in humour and atmosphere was a little much for me to stomach.