So the other night I was sitting around hanging out by myself feeding my dog peanut butter when I decided to check out what was new on Pay-Per-View. Scrolling through the trainwreck hodgepodge of movies already-seen and never-will-be-seen-- I saw this movie called 'Splinter' listed. I had just skimmed a review for it and was bummed that it wasn't in my local theater. But there it was! On pay-per-view! Already! I guess there's a new thing where with some small time flicks getting theatrical and pay-per-view same-day release situation type dealio. It was $6.99 and I bought it. Then immediately paused it and ordered up some chinese food-- and decided to start it up when the chinese food got here. (I like eating my chinese food in a big sort of sauce pot with a handle. I dump rice in. Chinese food in. Add soy or whatever. Then mix it up. I don't understand what's wrong with eating out of a pot with a handle while sitting on the couch. It's just convenient and stuff although it's slightly disturbingly trough-ish it works better than a plate and less messy.)
Anyway, this flick starts up and the first thing I noticed that this movie looks way cheap. I was like, 'Uh oh. Spaghettio.' (Chomp chomp chinese food) I figured I had signed up for a world of eyeball hurt. It looked like it was made for $3500 and 3500 favors. But within a minute or so I clicked into the cheap look of it. There was something genuine about its cheapness. Something very honest. Like it wasn't pretending to be anything it wernt. (Chomp chomp chinese food) And, when first 'attack' is all super shakeycam style-- it didn't bother me because it was obviously done out of necessity. It was endearing. They blatantly couldn't afford a real attack-- and I respected the style alot more than when you watch some high budget action flick that cheats their action by whipping the camera around. (I'm talking to you Underworld!)
This movie stars nobody in particular and has a pretty simple plot. Something weird going on. (Chomp chomp chinese food) Don't catch a splinter or else you're fukt and dead. And eventually the splinters will reanimate your dead-self with bone snapping and awkward movement deliciousness. Again all cheapy effects but weirdly extra creepy. The plot centers around a outdoorsy chick and her wimpy nerd boyfriend. Thrown in with criminal type guy and his druggie girlfriend. They all end up together and eventually they're in it together and have to drop the good guy/bad guy stuff and team up to survive. The acting is all pretty good. I thought the criminal guy was the best of the lot. Whatever whatever blah blah (Chomp chomp chinese food. Done and done).
This flick sort of hums along with some creepiness here and some psycho drama there. And some bad effects over there. With some eyerolling whatevery developments now and then. And I wasn't bored for a second. To make something this watchable and creepable on the super cheap has really become a rare thing. I've yanked a couple cheapy horror flicks off the pay-per-view in the past and kept my fingers crossed. I usually end up shutting them off after like fifteen minutes because they're so amazingly unwatchable. You wanna know how deep I go into pay-per-view? I paid for this flick called Invasion a few months back (no not that one with Kidman. there was another one.) But if you like horror and have grown snobbish on horror on the cheap because they're usually-- so cheap... look for this Splinter flick on the pay-per-view. In some ways it could be the best horror movie of the year. (In other ways, that might be a total stretch...)
Three Good Things About this Movie
- I liked how the dead things moved and cracked.
- The dramarama inside the convenience store worked well.
- The initial abduction felt surprisingly real.
Three Bad Things About this Movie
- It played by the rules straight through.
- The music could have been better.
- The initial unfreaked-out fascination by the scientist boyfriend was forced.
All in all, I know this is a short relatively unfunny review of a small movie that probably next-to-no-one will see. But if you're next-to-no-one and like digging deep into horror stuff, this one might flip you a little on the cheapy horror. Jump through the window and check out Splinter before it triggers another avalanche of bad supercheap movies and remind you how bad and cheap they usually are.