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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...

Wednesday, February 3, 2021

Camp Blood First Slaughter (2014)

If you have stumbled over this review you might want to check my look at the Camp Blood Franchise by starting at the beginning with Camp Blood. Click here to start things off right. 

Before I begin this review for the fourth installment of the Camp Blood series, I need to do some explaining. While this is the fourth movie in the Camp Blood franchise it isn’t Camp Blood 4. That is the next one which is actually the fifth entry into the series. That might be because Camp Blood 3 was originally titled Within the Woods, though it mentions the first two films and has the same killer. That might be why in some places this is Camp Blood 3 instead of Camp Blood First Slaughter and in other places is Camp Blood 4. Though again it is neither. Also, with the name Camp Blood First Slaughter you might think it is a prequel. It isn’t because it mentions that first three movies, including the one that wasn’t initially called Camp Blood because it is in fact a Camp Blood movie. Make sense? Yeah, I’m confused as well. Now onto the review.

After a couple of precredit kills, which I suppose are now a tradition despite having a new director and writer, we get the credits. Oh, and I guess that you should also know that a new killer in a different mask kills the clown after he has killed the couple that was taken out before the credits. I’m guessing that the clown isn’t the killer in this movie. We then meet a bunch of college students taking a course in Urban Legends. They watch some found footage of a couple being killed by the clown and are sent by their professor to prove or disprove the legend of the killer clown. Who we know is dead… Plus I’m thinking that most institutions of higher education would frown upon sending students into an active crime scene. But what do I know?

The big twist is the students walk into the woods and then we abruptly see all their death scenes. Then a title page that tells us it is six months later and that they found some cameras and are going to show us the footage. This shitty movie just became a shitty found footage movie midstream. Damn it! All the bad stuff you get in a found footage movie happens including attacks that you can’t see and camera work that is nausea inducing. Finally, we find out who the killer is and honestly, I didn’t care. I was just happy it was over.

Our new killer... I miss the clown
So much for my hope that Mark Polonia would be able to make a better Camp Blood movie. It was going well until the found footage crap kicked in and then it all went downhill. The pacing slows way down, and we get a lot over very boring bits of people walking around and talking. The kills are a bit of an improvement over those in Camp Blood 3, but there is also a ton of CGI including the terrible blood splatter that has been the bane of newer low budget movies. Of the thirteen kills I’d say that the machete thru the head was the best. This is a practical effect that has a bit of a CGI assist with it so that might explain why it is my favorite. There is also a severed head and an axe to the chest that are decent.

I will give the script some credit for tying into the first three movies. So far all of the Camp Blood flicks have done a decent job worldbuilding and making things fit. I mean they still aren’t very good, but I give them an “A” for the effort. Though I was annoyed that they seemingly gender swapped the original killer. If you are going to pay attention to the history of the franchise, I expect it to be carried thru until the end. The reveal of the killer was predictable and yet again they chose a female. Which has also been a pattern for these flicks. Oh yeah, the killer is the college professor who assigned them the homework that sent them in the woods. She has a connection to the original crimes that they explain. Again I appreciate trying to connect each entry with the one that came before it.

This is better than the previous movie but that isn’t a high bar to clear. Despite being a fan of Mark Polonia I’m going to have to recommend passing on this one. I hope that the next one is better.

Next up Camp Blood 4

Ó Copyright 2021 John Shatzer

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