Picture this – you come across a girl in the darkest corner of a basement in an abandoned psychiatric hospital. The girl is tied up, shorn of all her clothes, on a hospital gurney with a dazed look in her eyes. What do you do?
‘Deadgirl‘ starts off from here. A movie from the heart of mid-state suburban America, this movie makes no statements about its small origins, what with its unknown cast and minimal production values that are unhindered by some telling cinematography and the staple diet that horror films run on – visual prosthetics with a lot of blood, pus, torn faces and disemboweled bodies.
While predictable to some extent, ‘Deadgirl’ uses an uncomfortable situation exacerbated by unmitigated violence that reflects the helplessness of the victim while making the viewer sorry for and then repulsed by the very same victim. It is a conflict that makes it hard to watch as the movie goes on and the perpetrators of violence are almost made sitting ducks against an immortal force of nature that may be of supernatural or other-worldly origins.
The ‘almost’ twist in the end, while predictable does not leave a lasting impression but justifies the irony that the movie is based on. Directors Marcel Sarmiento and Gadi Harel may not be auteurs in the horror genre, but they do have the knack for bringing out a cringe worthy subject in as laid back a way as possible. I am a horror buff but it takes a really strong movie to intimidate me and ‘Deadgirl’ did not do that.
‘Deadgirl’ is not a statement making film, unlike ‘A Serbian Film‘ which according to its director was actually a film that had a patriotic Serbian undertone. That makes me wonder what the Serbs are going to do next. Make Slobodan Milosevic’s corpse immortal and go on giving him enemas till he skips the border into Transylvania to join some blood letting marauder of virgins and they happily skip and jump across borders covering every nation under the UN.
‘Deadgirl’ is not pretentious – that I will give, but when you have the lead character in this film looking like Edward Cullen with a sullen face waiting to perhaps sink some fangs into every soft tissue he finds, you can’t help but get some ‘Twilight‘y goose bumps that keep growing with the introduction of some High School Musical like scenes of male bravado and female cheer of the same. Don’t be mistaken, you still need to be well overage to watch this movie. Leave ‘Twilight’ for the animal activists waiting to picket some cruelty to werewolves thing.