Friday, June 15, 2012
MONSTER BRAWL (2011)
Directed by Jesse T. Cook
Dave Foley - Buzz Chambers
Art Hindle - Sasquatch Sid Tucker
Jimmy Hart - Himself
Eight classic monsters fight to the death in a wrestling tournament set inside an abandoned cursed graveyard.
So here's a movie that I heard about last year. The title alone caught my attention as it could have been such a fun watch, watching monsters beat the hell out of each other. Who didn't really think about that when we were younger? Watching Dracula tear apart The Monster. Or even better seeing the Wolfman run circles around the Mummy. Sounds like fun, right?
Oh if only Dave Foley could have been bothered to be a little more enthused to be in this. Yes, he's supposed to act the drunk, yet in this I actually think he might have been drinking for real, if not maybe he should have been. Foley could have made the film fun as he has above average comedic timing but in this you wouldn't be able to tell. Art Hindle on the other hand at least seems to be having what fun he can as the grizzled and surly old former wrestler who helps with the commentary during the matches. Hindle becomes even more fun once he gets bit by a zombie and still continues to comment on the preceedings as the virus he contracted takes hold over time. And well, needless to say the best actor in this is taken out before the end of the film. The rest of the cast is for the most part bland and uninspired. They couldn't even cut a decent promo which is essential for what the movie was going for. Well except for the mummy, but I think that had to do with the fact that he cut his promo in ancient Egyptian. I think.
For a movie that is supposed to be based somewhat on professional wrestling this whole experience is just to put it simply, boring. The matches for the most part are slow moving and there really isn't much reasoning behind each match and pairing of combatants. The whole story was they were supposed to be fighting for a belt that says they are the best or most dangerous monster. Here's one of the plot holes that happens in the film. There are two weight classes in the film and after two matches the lighter weight class is forgotten all together. So in fact the whole film when it ends isn't even complete as there should have been at least one more match. Instead it shows the supposed winner being challenged by a zombified character played by Kevin Nash. Hmm...let me guess a possible sequel might be in the works. Though I really hope there isn't going to be one. Another plot point that just turned into completely nothing except for a bunch of hot air is that throughout half the movie we keep on hearing that the graveyard this whole exercise in keeping my attention is taken place at is cursed. Okay, something really interesting might happen with it. What do I get in return? A slight bit of on screen lighting and five zombies. Yep, that's it for the curse. Complete let down. The dialogue is inane and boring throughout the movie. I heard better dialogue from a 90 year old lady at a indy wrestling event I went to with three of my friends than what I heard watching this. One of the best part of the movie is the back stories for each of the creatures and monsters featured in the movie. While some were better than others at least each one was for the most part interesting and a little bit entertaining.
The best part of Monster Brawl to me was the make-up effects. Every monster was done with in camera effects and practical effects for almost the whole movie. And what is even better is that the make-up effects get better as the movie goes on. Yet with that you can tell that the monster designs weren't quite complete when they started filming the movie as some of the monsters get better looking later on. The werewolf is a prime example of this. The look of the movie is above what I was expecting as it did have some very interesting locations, though these were only used for the back stories of the monsters with Swamp Gut's story is filmed like a documentary and is even filmed in an actual swamp. Yet with that plus it is wiped out with a camera ops who can't follow action to save their life. One of the wasted possibilities is the an actor who is the voice of God. Even worse was the lines he says when he speaks as everyone of them is a rip off of lines used in Mortal Kombat just a hundred percent more lame and stupid. Another hit against the movie is that it makes the monsters that we all grew up with and learned to love are made inept and stupid for the most part. I just have to say this as parting words of Monster Brawl. Save the 88 minutes you would have spent watching this and go and watch televised wrestling instead. At least with those you get to see surprisingly above average acting and a lot of the time very cool action for the most part.
Werewolf's open jaw examination.
And Buzz, technically it's Frankenstein's Monster if you want to be a dick about it.
Chosen as the Opening Gala Film at the 2011 Toronto After Dark Film Festival.
Monster Brawl was filmed at Collingwood, Ontario.