By Christopher Null
In another take on Series 7, Slashers strands six contestants in an elaborate warehouse with three psychotic killers. Glory and large cash prizes await those who survive. A gruesome death waits for those who fail to make it through the 90-minute show.
Ostensibly an episode of a Japanese TV show, the movie quickly switches to English by introducing six special American contestants, each with their own reasons for appearing on this Running Man-esque program. (One girl, played by Sarah Joslyn Crowder -- one of the few actors in the show with any other credit to her name (MTV's Undressed) -- wants to lambast society for supporting such a gruesome sport. One has Multiple Sclerosis and has given up on life. One was "dared" to go on the program. The others dream of the money and future stardom bestowed on survivors.)
And of course the contestants not only fight off the titular slashers (masked villains with names like like Chainsaw Charlie, et al.), they start to fight amongst themselves. And as the body count rises -- and we're talking disembowelments, impalings, and decapitations -- so does the infighting.
Writer/director/producer Maurice Devereaux shoots the film in real time and with the appearance that it's all one shot, Rope style, much like a TV show (or at least a TV show that only has one cameraman). Devereaux's sense of humor is as twisted as they come (one slasher, the tables turned against him, begs with the contestant not to kill him due to his wife and kids at home; the killers have a thing for forcing women to remove their shirts; and everyone has to stand in place during commercial breaks, which come up whenever someone is just about to get killed), and he's jammed a surprisingly high level of production values into this all-video effort. The gore is very well done, and the sets are designed extremely well. Getting this all to work together with a single shot (or so it seems) is even more impressive.
An instant cult classic and a worthy successor to its contemporaries like The Evil Dead.
We kill you long time.
Facts and Figures
In Theaters: Sunday 1st July 2001
Rotten Tomatoes: 20%
Fresh: 1 Rotten: 4
Cast & Crew
Also starring: Sarah Joslyn Crowder, Kieran Keller, Sofia Demedeiros, Jerry Sprio, Neil Napier, Carolina Pla, Claudine Shiraishi, Takaaki Honda, Erik Rutherford, Christopher Piggins, Maurice Devereaux