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Since I started the website I've done a Slasher marathon every summer. This time I thought I'd start things off in the first week of...

Monday, March 19, 2018

Dead Body (2017)




I debated on whether this should have been tossed into the slasher marathon. While it has the body count and masked killer there isn’t any gore or sleaze to speak of. Plus, it plays more as a mystery than it does a “body count” flick. In the end I figured that it didn’t belong on the list. With that out of the way the question then becomes is the movie any good?

Things kick off with a girl running thru the woods with a killer chasing her. They get into a bit of a tussle where his mask gets ripped off, though we don’t get to see the killer’s face. She says, “It was you the whole time?”. Then we jump back twelve hours in time to meet a group of kids meeting up at an isolated cabin after graduating from High School. It was supposed to be a small get together, but Ilsa (the girl being chased) has invited a lot more people. Things get a bit heated with the actual host, but eventually they all chill out for some fun.

That evening the group decides to play a game called Dead Body. One of them is randomly picked to be the killer the lights get shut off and someone is “murdered” with the surviving players trying to figure out which one of them is the killer. Sort of a live action version of Clue. I don’t think that this game is going to end well. Real dead bodies start to show up and the kids realize that someone is killing them off. But who is it and why? The rest of the movie is them being hunted, murdered, and turning on each other. Seemingly at random the group thinks a different survivor must be the killer with most everyone being suspected at one point or the other.

Dead Body has a fun “who done it” vibe that I dug. I had an idea as to who the killer was, but it really was a guess. Turned out that my guess was correct, but the story does a wonderful job of providing the viewer with many reasonable suspects. When the characters get paranoid and start accusing each other they actually have a legitimate point. That is a credit to how well things are laid out with each character having a backstory in context to the group. Everyone has skeletons that they would rather stay in the closet. The pacing is also important because the action keeps moving along and we don’t get to dwell on the most recent accusations. It keeps us off balance and guessing like the characters.

Who done it? So many suspects!
This is a low budget movie, so you never know what you are going to get. Here the lighting, camera work, and sound are all solid. Much of it takes place at night in the dark, which can be a nightmare to shoot. But they do a decent job. There isn’t much gore in the movie as most of the kills are implied or happen off screen. The one thing that does happen is rather gruesome and ironically not related to killing but to reloading a nail gun. I won’t spoil it here. Watch the movie and you’ll see what I’m talking about.

Dead Body isn’t the kind of movie that you will need to go back and watch again. Once the plot plays out and the motivation of the killer is revealed I don’t see there will be a need to revisit it. Just to be clear this observation isn’t meant as a negative. Dead Body is all about the who done it, so once you know that it likely loses something. That said the movie is certainly worth it. Solid story with a body count and satisfying twist makes for a good time. I recommend this one.



© Copyright 2018 John Shatzer

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