Ditch Day currently available on VOD is the latest offering from director Joe Hendrick, it’s a straight up story of revenge and with the aid of sinister veteran Bill Oberst Jr. delivers its homage to 80’s slashers perfectly.
The film starts with a young woman driving under the influence of alcohol, inevitably she crashes and causes the death of a mother and child. Bill Oberst Jr. plays Vick, the survivor of the crash and dedicates his life to finding the person responsible for taking his family from him.
Jenny Bilson (Katy Foley), a high school senior, daughter of a police detective and a model student decides to bunk a day off school……persuaded by her boyfriend whilst mum and dad are out of town. Queue perfect slasher territory, nice big house, pool party and teens drinking – the stage is set.
The plot really is simple and you can pretty much work things out from the first 15 minutes although there is a twist which I won’t ruin. In all honesty it works to the films advantage, all you need to know is that Vick loses his family to a drunk driver, spends the rest of his time seeking revenge and is willing to cut open anyone in his way!
Then we move on to the gore! Wow……..Ditch Day really does showcase some top quality practical effects, there is blood from start to finish and it’s seriously brutal! From his axe, to a weed wacker and a chainsaw…….Vick is trained in an arsenal which he literally makes mince meat of his victims with. Each death does feel quite unique and whilst I’m sure they have been influenced by a handful of classic slasher films Hendrick has put his mark on each of them.
For the most part acting is on par with an indie budget, helped by the experienced Bill Oberst Jr. who is scarily convincing as a crazed killer – his emotionless face and barbaric killing methods are as cold as they get. The teens themselves are fairly redundant characters, really they are just part of the body count and although we are probably supposed to feel some sort of compassion for Jenny she’s a number just like the rest. Some humour can be found in the way of goth chick Trina (Pandie Suicide) who adds a couple of moments of rest from the onslaught, her bedroom antics in particular……..are hilarious!
Ditch Day really is a true slasher, the plot is paper thin but it’s just an excuse for Bill Oberst Jr. to absolutely dispatch as many victims possible in any way he can! It’s hard to pick fault with what’s on offer, some people might not get on with the single location used for 90% of the film but personally it didn’t detract…..there’s enough happening to keep the pace!
A seriously bloody homage to 80’s slashers!