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I thought I'd kick the new year off with another movie marathon. I thought it was time to check out a few old school mystery flicks. Som...

Thursday, October 19, 2023

Killer Book Club (2023)

Every October I dig into the streaming services as well as my to watch pile looking for new or new to me horror flicks to watch. As you can see from my earlier reviews that means I end up watching a lot of… well for a lack of a better word… crap. But I keep diving headfirst into the shallow end of the cinematic pool on the hopes that I find a gem. To that end I found Killer Book Club on Netflix and decided to give it a shot.

Our main characters are college students as well as members of a book club that is currently reading something called Killer Clowns, sadly not from outer space! We meet the characters, including Angela who is a published author suffering from writer’s block. This is important because she looks to her professor, Cruzado, for help and he offers to meet with her. Though when she arrives at his office his intentions are of a more personal nature Things get creepy with lots of grabbing and groping before she gets away.

This makes the club angry and they decide to get some payback. Inspired by the book they are reading they buy a bunch of clown masks and decide to terrorize him one night. Apparently scaring the crap out of him is a much better solution than reporting his unwanted advances. Well things go horribly wrong as he accidentally falls to his death and the book club members swear each other to secrecy. That lasts until someone in a clown mask starts to kill them off while taunting them over social media. Damn a lot of new horror movies use social media… though I suppose that relates well to the audience they are going for. The bodies pile up, secrets are reveled, and we get a happy ending. Or do we? Dum Dum Dum!

I liked this one. While not breaking any new ground it does take the formula and run with it efficiently. We get the unintentional death leading to an unknown person coming for revenge while the shrinking group of survivors try to figure out who is after them. The characters fall into the traditional tropes of final girl, annoying friend, bad boy, forlorn crush, and the guy who dismisses everything. There is even the big twist ending that isn’t that much of a twist if you watch slasher movies. But all of this is packaged together in an entertaining and well-paced ninety minutes that keeps the action moving to a satisfying conclusion. You don’t have to reinvent the wheel if you execute the old familiar formula well enough. Here I think the filmmakers do that.

The kills are also fun starting off with the professor getting skewed on the sword of a Don Quixote statue, he is a literature professor after all. There is a lot of stabbing and slashing of book club members with much mayhem to chests and throats. We get so see some folks burn alive and old Don Quixote gets another victim before things are all done. My favorite gag is one that doesn’t result in a death but is just gnarly. It involves a knife to the chin. I’ve seen it before but for some reason these sorts of onscreen injuries always get me. Be warned that much of the gore is digital or at least has a digital assist. But beggars can’t be choosers and they don’t linger on them, so it isn’t obvious if you aren’t paying close attention.

This isn’t going to go on my list of flicks that I need to watch every October but overall, its pretty good. If you have Netflix and are looking for something new to watch, I think that Killer Book Club is worth an hour and a half of your time.


© Copyright 2023 John Shatzer

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