Welcome witches and warlocks,
Today I will be reviewing the horror/comedy short DEATH METAL by writer/director Chris McInroy. To best describe the story, I will turn to IMDB's plot summary:
"A metalhead gets passed down a satanic guitar that riffs to shreds."
The conceit for this is quite simple; a metalhead who plays guitar for tips is given a new satanic guitar that has some regulations attached. It is this rules portion that is especially amusing as it gives the whole thing an eighties throwback feel, and the laws of the guitar would be nearly impossible for him to follow. Granted, for him to even know that there were restrictions regarding his playing, he would have had to stick around to listen to them being explained. Instead, he takes the guitar and runs, much to the detriment of those who happen to hear his unholy playing.
As with many classic horror films, it is when the consequences hit that the true fun begins. Quick warning, the payoff to the setup is a blood spattered gore fest where no one, not even a child, is safe. That being said, it is done with such an over the top, campy touch that it is hard not to find the gore stained finale amusing.
The framing during the bloody melee involves a lot of close-ups to really show off the ridiculous effects. The effects on display are rather impressive as most of the gore seemed to be pulled off practically. There are quite a few visual highlights during this sequence, but my favorite was definitely the final title frame as it pretty well summed up the entirety of this short with one hilariously gory image.
All in all, this is a blood drenched dark comedy with some fantastic effects. The story is simple, but very reminiscent of the cause and effect horror pictures of the past. Thanks to the rules at play and the gory consequences, this ends up feeling like a cross between GREMLINS (1984) with RE-ANIMATOR (1985).
The Creeping Craig