Venom tries to be a throwback to the classic 80’s slashers. That’s commendable. However, it came out in the mostly toothless 90’s. Not only that, but it was produced by the douche-bag that wrote those Scream movies and was directed by the moron who did I Know What You Did Last Summer. I know there are a lot of fans of that Scream series, but I actively hated the first and never bothered with the sequels. Sue me, but all I remember is throwing my hat at the screen.
The movie is set in the bayous of Louisiana, so there are some nice settings. This tow-truck driver goes to save a voodoo lady (yay, Ween!) he accidentally ran off the road and ends up falling into the river in the car. Also, there are magical voodoo snakes that digitally pop out of a suitcase and bite the shit out of him. He comes back to life and kills anyone he comes across. Teenagers have to find a way to stop him before they all end up dead.
Did you notice something wrong with that brief synopsis? Yeah, there was no motivation for the killer to do what he does. It’s explained that the snakes had the souls of bad people in them and the bad people souls were transferred into the truck driver. So, he’s just a meat puppet filled with bad people souls. That’s it.
Sure, later on the grand-daughter of the voodoo lady states that since she is now the last voodoo lady-person, he will seek her out and kill her.
Fine. But he does that and then fixates on chasing down the last two kids. Why? Would he just keep killing until he’d wiped out the population of Louisiana and then move on to Mississippi? Or what?
That’s the main problem with this flick. I can take a relatively bloodless slasher (and this is one) but when there is no reason for the actions taken by the killer, it’s actually boring.
Speaking of blood, or lack thereof, there a couple good ideas. Like the death by sand-blaster or when he starts catching people around the neck with a chain, but it’s all very tame for an R-rated horror film. I’m going to assume that it received that for the use of the “fuck -word”.
The movie looks great and the acting, considering what they have to say, isn’t all that bad. But the script and the film, itself, show signs of tampering and last-minute tweaking.
You can tell they wanted to create a new slasher/hero with this flick ala Jason. But just having him be evil for evil’s sake isn’t very memorable. No, we wouldn’t get the next Jason until another Louisiana-set film: Hatchet (which starred ,arguably, the most famous Jason ever, Kane Hodder, as the killer). That was a movie that thought out its back story for our killer. And also delivered the blood and carnage.
What’s interesting, to me, is that the movie was based on a video game called Backwoods, or something, that was never completed or released, as far as I can tell. Admittedly, I didn’t look around too hard. The movie doesn’t deserve that much attention.
I guess being born in Louisiana makes me partial to films set there. So, this goes with Hard Target as a guilty pleasure for me.
Rating: 2 1/2