Legacy of Thorn (2014)
Director: MJ Dixon
Writer: MJ Dixon
Starring: Jade Wallis, Mem Ferda, Paris Rivers
Building on the shared slasher movieverse started in Slasher House (read the review HERE), Legacy of Thorn marks the return of the deadliest of the killers, titular Thorn, in this prequel which expands upon his backstory. The film focuses on a group of teens who lost their friends in an encounter with Thorn four years ago and now they are attempting to stop him when he returns to finish what he started.
Let’s talk about Thorn for a sec. This is a pretty in depth creation here. When a lot of people want to make a slasher, they just say “Hey, I’ll give him this mask and this weapon and have him kill lotsa folks!” Thorn has got to be the most elaborate, original indie slasher I’ve seen since Dollman from Methodic. I won’t go too into detail because I feel that will take away from some of the good WTF moments, but let’s just say Thorn is a beast and any scene with him in it is instant entertainment.
The acting is a step up from Slasher House, in my opinion. Still could use a little work, but, overall, it was solid enough. Again, same thing I said in my review of Slasher House, one of the high points is the physicality of Thorn. Honestly, physical performance can be even more difficult than verbal. It requires a level of self awareness of one’s body, overcoming personal tics and such, that can be very difficult. Yet, even though the actor is different this time, the performance stands on equal footing. This is an actor who is not acting, but living the character. Bit of Chekhov method for you there.
The effects also see an improvement. They have become more ambitious, with illusions performed amazingly, such as Thorn lifting a girl up and literally ripping her in two! There is a bit of CGI this time, primarily in a transformation scene, but it’s kept minimalistic and manages to not be a detriment.
The story is both it’s greatest strength and greatest weakness. The film shows two different timelines, one showing what happened 4 years ago and one showing the current time. The two timelines are cut up and spaced throughout the film, switching back and forth. It’s a clever technique. It tells two stories at once and is more highbrow by far than most slasher films can offer. But sometimes the switches threw me a bit.
Overall, though, I very much enjoyed this film and can’t wait to see the next entry, Cleaver: Rise of the Killer Clown, which comes out next year!
If you want to see the film for yourself, you can pick up a copy at legacyofthorn.com!
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