Sunday, June 10, 2012

Horror Film Review

The Terror Experiment (2010):  You know you're in trouble when Jason London and C. Thomas Howell get top billing.  In any movie.  While it is a zombie flick, it gets no exclamation point.  Why?  Cuz it's a train wreck in the guise of a horror film.  So bad that I think I was in shock.  This is the excuse I'm going with when asked why I didn't just turn the damn thing off.  Well...that, and I had a review to write.  Man, this thing isn't even on par with crap they have on after midnight on the SyFy Channel.

Let's get this over with.  Cale (London) is a suit working at a federal building.  A nutjob sets off a bomb in a secret bio lab in the building and a gaseous biological weapon is released.  Anyone exposed goes all Mr. Hyde (something about the adrenal gland going into overdrive) and there's a bloodbath.  Cale and a few other survivors hide, then he and a PI woman (Alicia Leigh Willis) decide to find the lab, then decide to find Cale's daughter.  Meanwhile, the chief of police shows up (Howell) along with the feds (led by Judd Nelson) who reveal the building will self-destruct when its emergency power runs out.  Some cockamamie, post-9/11 contingency thing.  Turns out the daughter isn't even in the friggin' building and there was no danger of not escaping the detonation.  And there's like only a half dozen "zombies" to deal with.  No tension, no drama.  All kinds of stupid.

Only one person wasn't miscast in this mess.  Robert Carradine as the head scientist worked.  Judd Nelson as a straight-laced, government stooge...not so much.  Especially if you've ever seen The Breakfast Club.  Howell as Chief Grasso with his Tom Selleck mustache and salt and pepper hair is just plain wrong.  The other major flaw is the editing.  The Terror Experiment had to have been cut by a drunk film student with ADD.  I can't remember a movie where I've cared less what happens to the characters.  Doesn't help that the dialogue is eye-rollingly bad.  And then there's the...  I could go all day, but I think you get the gist of it. 


Acting:  Not quite cringe-inducing. 
Story:  Tired.
Direction:  I think the camera guys just sort of did their own thing.  Only explanation that makes sense.
Production Values:  They had $5 million to play with, and I guarantee most of it went to paying the B-list actors and renting all of the emergency vehicles.  The interior sets are cheaply made. 
Gore/FX:  There's merely dash of blood and one oddly boring disembowelment. 
Scares:  The attempts are truly sad. 
Ending:  A whole bunch of who cares.
Verdict:  Should you see The Terror Experiment?  Only if you're the number one fan of Howell or London.  Otherwise...God, no. 

Rating:  1 out of 5

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