07 February 2011
Raymond Did It 2011 - REVIEW
While most people scour the Internet and movie news sites looking for the "next great movie" that's coming out, I just kinda hang back and keep an eye on the indie scene. As far as I'm concerned that's where the greatness is coming from these days. After all, wasn't Hatchet just an indie glimmer in Adam Green's eye when it came about? Or how about Feast, Pontypool, Ginger Snaps, Eden Lake, May or one of my new faves, Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon? The list could literally go on and on. Watch any of these films and you will see what a micro budget, some imagination and a little hard work can deliver. It's getting to a point where I don't even go to the theater for big studio horror anymore. What's the point? It's all over done, re-done or just plain done. There's absolutely nothing original coming out of H-Wood anymore. At least not as far as horror goes. I'd rather just wait for a screener or DVD release and kick back at home with a few friends (who am I kidding, I don't have friends) and a little alcohol. Don't get me wrong, indie horror has it's share of stinkers too but when a gem like one of the aforementioned films comes around... instant gratification.
I'm quickly becoming aware of the effort that goes into a micro budget film be it short or feature length and I'm gaining a new respect for the people that make it happen. From directors/producers who put in their own money to actors who put their best face forward on a strictly no/low paying gig.
Raymond Did It is a slasher film in the tradition of Halloween and Prom Night. When twelve-year-old Bryce Rourke is accidentally killed in a playground scuffle, his friends decide to blame Bryce's developmentally delayed older brother for the accident. Raymond is taken to a state hospital while the true killer walks free. Six years later, Raymond escapes from the hospital to seek bloody revenge for his brother's death.
This is not your typical indie horror cast. Lindsay Felton from VH1’s Scream Queens plays Tammy, who was Raymond's only friend and the only one who had any remorse whatsoever about Bryce's death. Also from Scream Queens, Jessica Palette appears as Jayme, and horror veteran Elissa Dowling stars as the manipulative Paige. Newcomer Kyle Hoskins plays Raymond in his first feature-length film and he tears the screen up with his imposing 6'5" bulky stature. He's not really given much to say but just knowing the back story of the character, it's easy to sympathize with his character and it doesn't hurt that he pulls off the timid nature of Raymond pretty well.
Travis Legge pulls out (IMO) a very solid micro budget horror here. It doesn't have the normally shoddy sound that is infamous in these kinds of Indie films. The score is reminiscent of John Carpenter's original Halloween. (I can think of one shot in particular that brought me right back to the streets of Haddonfield.) The down side, there are a couple of choppy scenes (not overly noticable) and one or two rushed kills but the gore makes up for it. One little hint... washing machine. Not to mention the ending kinda leaves it open for a sequel. Will there be a sequel Mr. Legge?? C'mon, you can tell me.
In my opinion Legge has created one of those gems that come along every so often and he's someone who will do very well amongst the horror fiends and I for one can't wait to see what he does next..... Perhaps The Social Media Massacre with me?? Time will tell.