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Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Victor Crowley (2017)




The Slasher marathon continues with Hatchet IV… I mean Victor Crowley. Really guys would it have killed you to properly name it. Are sequels a bad thing now? Is there some hatred of Roman Numerals that I’m unaware of? Anyway, Adam Green and Kane Hodder are back to give us even more swampy murder fun. Warning there will be SPOILERS!

Andrew, who earlier survived an encounter with Victor Crowley, is on a book tour trying to convince the world that he isn’t a killer. Seems that being found in the swamp with a pile of bodies and claiming that a local legendary boogieman killed them didn’t go over so well. Everyone thinks that he got away with the murders. Reluctantly Andrew signs up to fly over the swamps for a show that is supposed to give him a chance to talk about what really happened, and to promote his book. Damn plane crashes right into the swamp near Crowley’s cabin! But he is dead right?

In a parallel story we see an aspiring filmmaker headed off to the swamp to shoot her own horror movie. Well actually just a trailer to drum up interest in funding the project. In an effort to be authentic they play YouTube clips of the voodoo chant/spell that raised Crowley in the first place. Holy Crap the internet brought the killer back to life! Okay I’m digging that. Plane crash, filmmakers, and Crowley all in the swamp. Let the body count begin! Well I forgot to mention that the gore already started earlier in a funny flashback to the sixties that gives us some kills before introducing the new victims.

I love the Hatchet series and Victor Crowley gives me everything I want in one of these movies. The characters are funny and play off of each other nicely. Felissa Rose of Sleepaway Camp fame has what I at first thought was a cameo but turns out to be a good part as Andrew’s PR person. She chews up some scenery, has funny lines, and is generally a blast to watch. And her death scene is one of the best! Parry Shen returns as the character Andrew and is a perfect blend of whiney and brave. Once the plane crashes he knows what is going to happen and tries to help. Plus, the stuff about him getting yelled at and dealing with harassment during the book tour is funny. Again, everyone thinks he is a mass murderer making money on his crimes.

Victor Crowley stalking his victims.
The deaths are well staged, and the gore is top notch. We get a head lopped off, some eyeball related fun, an extended dismemberment, hammers to noggins’, someone gets scalped and other fun. The best kill is when Rose’s character loses her arm and it ends up in an uncomfortable place. There is even a very disturbing and sad death when Tiffany Shepis’ character who is trapped on the plane drowns as it sinks. It is a bit jarring and doesn’t fit with the tone of the rest of the movie, but because of that carries a bit of weight. I hadn’t expected something like that, but it shows that director Green knows how to make a movie that will surprise you.

In the past fans have complained about the number of cameos in the Hatchet series. While we do see Tony Todd on an iPhone screen and there is a fun post credit bit to setup another sequel it is held to a minimum in Victor Crowley. The only familiar face that gets any screen time is Rose and she has an honest to God part! This is a really funny, entertaining, and bloody throwback to the eighties Slasher that fans should see. I highly recommend it.


© Copyright 2018 John Shatzer

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