Review: Smash Cut


Two things might attract you to this movie; if you’re like C, it’s the prospect of seeing porno actress Sasha Grey doing something other than swallowing massive cock (although why you would want to see her doing anything but that is a mystery to me), or you’re like myself, and want to see a movie that is a tribute to the life and works of the God Father of gore H.G. Lewis.

It’s a sound idea, with the countless horror movies released who try so hard to be 80s-like it always amazed me people didn’t think to go back further, to where it all began. ‘Smash Cut’ dares to try, and whilst it doesn’t make a particularly good go of it, the thought was there.

Naturally the plot takes heavy inspiration from Lewis’ movies. In this, very similar in nature to ‘Colour Me Blood Red’, a struggling film maker decides that to get the realistic gore effects his fans demands he must use real gore. Murder follows, so does paranoia and soon enough the director finds himself running out of friends.
The plot certainly sets the film up nicely to achieve its goals. It allows plenty of invention with deaths and the introduction of a host of characters ranging from the bland to the excessively eccentric. True to form both of these features are certainly present in the movie, but somehow, they miss the mark completely.

Beginning with the characters, my god, since when did eccentric simply mean as gay as the day is long? It was a good idea to use Hess in the lead role, but disappointingly his acting ranges from really good to fucking awful and then there is Miss Grey; who bills a porno star and keeps her fully clothed?, unbelievable but it’s true. The acting is pretty inconsistent which ruins much of the atmosphere the movie attempts to create. It was a nice touch to rely a lot on improvised lines, again another homage, but it should be punchy, or absurd, anything to hold attention; in ‘Smash Cut’ much of it is just plain boring, with many of the jokes simply falling on their arse.

The gore, or lack of it, is another disappointment. The effects aren’t really the problem, I realised that they were obviously fake to mimic some of the questionable gore props used in the 60s and 70s however I distinctly remember most of Lewis’ gore being quite revolting and of bad taste. In ‘Smash Cut’ they are all played for a laugh which was a bit of a shame. In addition to this, and contrary to much of Lewis’ ethos, many of the gore scenes are remarkably weak, nothing much is shown. On occasion the gore is there with some guts and plenty of blood, but certainly nothing which sticks in your head like in Lewis’ movies.

‘Smash Cut’ delivers an experience which is occasionally close to the great Lewis movies of old, too often though it forces the formula too far, with the ‘bad acting’ coming off a little to camp, and many of the jokes coming too close to seeming like a bit of a piss take. There are many aspects of the movie which fall short, but overall, the main problem remains that for a movie attempting to pay homage to the God Father of gore, it’s not anyway near gory enough.

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