Crazy B*tches (2014) *1/2
D: Jane Clark
C: Nayo Wallace, Liz McGeever, Andy Gala, Victoria Profeta, Cathy DeBuono, Blake Berris, Samantha Colburn, Mary Jane Wells, Guinevere Turner, David Fumero, Candis Cane
Plot Synopsis: A girls' weekend away turns into a nightmare when, one by one, they are killed by their own vanity.
REVIEW: In Crazy Bitches, we're introduced to a group of former sorority sisters and their gay best friend, who have reunited for a little R&R and to catch up with one another. However, a killer lurks in the shadows, offing them one by one, in various ways associated with their own vanity.
There's one character who prizes her hair. Yet, that aspect of the character never comes across in a tangible way, because we don't see her styling her hair enough. If it was up to me, this character would have been carrying a comb or some kind of styling product at all times. Or, we have another character, who prizes her virginity. And yet again, the virginity aspect of this character doesn't come across. From a visual perspective (in terms of costuming), this character looks like a rich, daddy's girl. In conveying virginity, I would have had this character dressed from head to toe without one sliver of skin showing.
There also happens to be gay male character in the mix. He's the kind of guy that is obsessed with his skin and digging around for dirt. If this film is supposed to be a satire, the film fails to make any kind of point in regards to gay characters in film. I think a smarter approach would have been, to make this character, the type of person who's obsessed with football and power tools. In my guesstimation, that would have conveyed the idea that all bets are off in regards to who can and can't be gay in a film, since football and power tools are more commonly associated with heterosexual males.
Also in the mix, is a horny ranch hand who's trying to score with everyone. This is the only character that comes anywhere near to being fully thought out. As played by Blake Berris, this character has one goal in life, to have sex and lots of it. However, if this character, is the kind of person that has swag and is all about sex, I think it would have been more appropriate if Berris had been 100% shirtless throughout the film, instead of wearing a flannel shirt. After all, this character, is supposed to be selling women on the idea that they should have sex with him and what better way to do that, then by flaunting his body.
Crazy Bitches wants to be a satire into vanity and of the various characters that populate horror films, but the satire never comes across. When it comes to satire, you have to be able to sell what it is that you're satirizing from beginning to end. Dialogue is part of the equation. However, the other part is mannerisms and the overall look of the character. That's what's really going to drive the message home. The characters not only have to say lines that convey what it is that you're satirizing, but you also have to be able to see it. And that's where Crazy Bitches falls short. It fails to sell its satire, visually. Without the visual impact, the satire of the film falls by the wayside.
Since the satire never comes across in a palpable way, the only recourse, is to judge Crazy Bitches as a straight up horror film. On those terms, the film comes up short. There's never no feeling of suspense or tension. When the killer has set his (or her) sights on a victim, they're already trapped. So the only thing left, is to watch as the characters get offed. Or, in another scene, a few characters band together to hike twenty miles to escape this situation. That feeling of the desert heat or of being in the middle of nowhere or having to fight for your life in the most desperate of situations never comes across.
And then there's the ending. I can't go into detail about it, as I don't want to spoil the film for those that haven't seen it, but let's just say, that they could have incorporated something thought provoking, but they blow it. Instead, we're given the usual slasher formula -- a killer is unveiled, they spit out some venom, there's a struggle and then the film ends, letting us know who survived.
I can appreciate that Crazy Bitches wanted to take a look at the bigger picture and wanted to say something more considered, but it all gets lost in the mix. Both as a horror film and as a satire, the film is far too reserved in its overall approach. The film needed to dial it up a few notches. After all, with both horror and satire, you're exploring heightened emotions. In order to convey those emotions, you have to over exaggerate the situation, as much as possible, in order to get the point across. [Not Rated] 100 mins.
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