Chain Letter [Blu-Ray] Deon Taylor

Chain Letter [Blu-Ray] Deon Taylor
The problem with Chain Letter isn't that it's an ineptly made film, showing no promise of talent in front of, or behind, the camera while adhering to absurdly sexist standards and uninspired plot machinations. No one expects greatness from a horror movie about teenagers dying at the hands of a Luddite serial killer that wields, quite literally, chains if they don't forward a chain letter. The problem is more of how seriously it takes itself, opening with a quote from Friedrich Nietzsche and going full-tilt with its "big brother" privacy admonition despite stilted dialogue and ex-porn star performances from its perplexingly cast roster of "actors." Rather than just killing off the various interchangeable teenagers with unnecessarily protracted, gory kills, the folks behind this little gem interjected endless amounts of didactics (care of a paycheque collecting Brad Dourif). There's also a woefully misguided police investigation storyline with Keith David spouting howl-inducing dialogue like, "If the killer is a Luddite, why would he use technology to kill his victims? It doesn't make sense!" Perhaps if there were some semblance of self-consciousness, or lack of delusion, the frequently re-used footage, awkward cinematography and incompetent editing could be somewhat overlooked. Even the killing of male characters with car motors and gym equipment, while the women get fully naked and take bubble baths surrounded by scented candles, would come off as referential, tongue-in-cheek crap. Instead, this nihilistic exercise in sheer incompetence rides the unintentional humour roller coaster that even SyFy "original movies" manage to avoid by being in on the joke. To boot, even the anti-technology subtext misses its point, observing privacy breaches – something that happens with or without technology – but never acknowledging the true dangers of instant gratification and lowered intellectual demands. Or maybe the point is that cellphones and the internet will eventually make people stupid enough that they'll watch nonsense like this and not roll their eyes dismissively. No supplements are included with the Blu-Ray, which is a shame, because I was wondering who was under the impression that girls chat on the phone before bed in lacy underwear and full makeup. (Image)