'Monster Man' is one of those films whose marketing does it little favours. Considering the lame title, and the comparison between Jeeper's Creepers and Duel, I normally avoid films whose selling point comes from the strengths of other movies, 'Monster Man' was a nice surprise as it offered a relitivly amusing script with a good mash-up of gore, sexyness and an old-school feel.
It's advertising leaves little to the imagination. Yes, just like in 'Jeepers Creepers', two guys are harassed by a mysterious demon style creature, whom they dub Fuck Face driving a large custom modified truck, a la 'Duel'. They pick up a mysterious sexy lady on the way, and, owing to their assailants persistence, between the three realise there is no escape. They must face their fears and risk getting run over.
The movies plot doesn't really demand much praise, as its nothing new; off the top of my head I can think of several other movies which have the same premise, in addition to the two mentioned on the DVD sleeve, however, the script and acting of the two gents involve make the movie seem quite unique, and in all honesty once the movie gets going you quickly drop the comparisons and enjoy the movie for its own merits. Initially the acting comes off a little camp and the jokes, well they are quite corny; we were not overwhelmed to begin with, but once the characters are developed a little more you see that the jokes are in keeping with the characters persona and, whilst they remain proper corny, they get a few laughs right.
The movie has an odd, but positive feeling to it. It certainly doesn't take itself seriously, but as certain aspects of the movie are kept true to the horror vein it never becomes a ridiculous parody unto itself as so often happens in horror/comedies which frankly turn geeky. There are no ass-kissing homages made to other movies despite the copious opportunities to do so. The monster itself looks suitably gruesome having been stitched together from other victims, and the truck it drives, which appears to have been genuinely costumed for the film, looks pretty cool. There are some tense moments, which, granted are not particularly scary, but they do serve to remind you that this movie is still wanting to be a horror in spite of all the gags.
With a strong script and a passable bad-guy - ha Fuck Face - they really should have called the movie that - the movie just needed a reasonable amount of gore to seal the deal.
Despite several sources on the internet I feel I must say that whilst there is some gore, its not as 'stomach churning' as has been suggested. Most of the gore comes at the end, and even then it is nothing excessive. The effects are OK, but again, they fit into the category of splatter, rather than anything realistically brutal. As if to complement the direction of the script, the gore in the movie is handled a little tongue in cheek. The body count is pretty low too, and so if you are looking for a movie which is continually bloody then look elsewhere.
Overall, this movie was a pleasant surprise. From the movies synopsis, title and marketing I was not expecting much; in all honesty I can't really remember why I ordered it in the first place! But as you may be able to tell from the tone of my review, it isn't all that bad. It is definitely nothing to go mental over, but for a couple of quid, and you like the idea, you will probably enjoy it. It has an amusing script, which whilst quite infantile in its content, keeps the pace going and a little bit of gore thrown in too.