We at theblood-shed were lucky enough to obtain an advance screener of the upcoming horror/comedy/exploitation film All Hell Breaks Loose. Described by the makers as “the story of love, leather, and violence”, the film is a throwback to good ol’ grindhouse sleaze. And I loved it!
The film’s plot, summarized by the creators, is as follows: When the Satan’s Sinners, a vicious motorcycle gang from hell, kidnaps one man’s bride, they bite off more than they can chew. Now the man is out to save his wife any way he can… even if it means dying over and over again. With the help of a shit-kicking sheriff, a perverted priest, and a cowboy who just might be God, all hell is bound to break loose.
This film is non-stop, over-the-top, gratuitous fun! And it’s impressive considering their proclamation of a micro-budget! I’ve seen horror films with budgets in the millions that were no where near as entertaining and this just goes to prove my opinion that, if you want a good horror flick, the indie scene is where to find the gems. Let’s break it down, dear readers.
The acting isn’t going to win any Oscars, but it was acceptable. Part of me suspects that some of it was quasi-cheesed up on purpose to make it more reminiscent of the grindhouse movies the film is done in the style of. My two favorite characters are the nerdy protagonist, Nick, and one of the leaders of the biker gang, known only as Sundown. Nick is awkward as hell and every scene with him attempting to be a tough guy is just amazing. Now, Sundown, him I like a lot for one very simple reason: he reminds me a lot of Joe Vickers from the Psycho Cop movies. He sounds like him, quips like him, even bears a bit of a resemblance to him. At one point I paused the movie to check IMDB to see if it was the same actor. But no, Sundown is played by Joshua Lee Frazier and I think he did a hell of a job! He had great facial expressions and gestures. I could tell he was really into his role.
The effects were a bit of a mix bag, but it in no way detracted from my enjoyment of the film. The only thing I did not like was the CGI blood spurts from the gun shot wounds. Now, wounds themselves were done amazingly! Truly great practical FX! I was really impressed with some “melting human” effects achieved in one scene that reminded me of the original Evil Dead and that one scene in Jason Goes to Hell where the man melts away after Jason leaves his body (Yes, Jason goes to Hell sucked. But that scene was well orchestrated!). All of those digital blood spurts put together back to back probably equal about 2-3 seconds of this 90 minute movie. In light of the amazing otherwise-practical effects, I’m not letting a little bit of CGI change my score of this film.
The camerawork was really well done and is one of the biggest elements that really captures that grindhouse feel. This is done with a combination of lighting, angles, and a really nice “degraded film” effect overlay that feels very authentic.
Now, most importantly, the plot was great. It was original and entertaining, full of running jokes and references. The characters are interesting, the action is great, and there is never a dull moment! It was quick paced, easy to follow, and unfolded naturally.
Bottomline, I loved this movie! It was fun! I could see it being a cult favorite for fans of the grindhouse exploitation movies. Personally, I think this movie would make a great companion piece to Tarantino’s doulogy of Planet Terror and Death Proof. I encourage a distributor to pick them up so I can give them my money.
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