2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
A smart, funny horror comedy.,
This review is from: Behind the Mask - the Rise of Leslie Vernon [DVD] (DVD)
I'm very, very glad that I'm too young to have been into horror movies during the 90's self-aware horror wave headed up by Scream and fortunately culled in the form of Freddy vs. Jason. The idea was pretty similar to the recent wave of pseudo-realistic zombie fiction a la The Zombie Survival Guide, where the humour comes from the assumption that we're in on all the in-jokes, without wanting any of the genuine enjoyment that the more sincere genre films inspire. They simply weren't pitching to horror fans, but to people who've read about horror tropes somewhere. Becoming the Mask: the Rise of Leslie Vernon knows its market much better.
Initially billed as a mockumentary of an aspiring slasher villain's preparation for his big first-slaughter night, it's presented in the typical tongue-in-cheek mode we've seen since Spinal Tap, and it has a lot of fun, from certain laugh out loud one-liners to the knowing, head-nodding amusement of recognising the acknowledging of all the old cliches. The fun a roomful of horror moguls will have with the first and second acts of this film is worth the price alone. There's even a superb line in Leslie explaining the behind-the-scenes action, and the tricks of the trade.
And in the third act, all this is traded in for a total change of pace that both subverts classic slasher features and plays them gleefully straight. This section is for the horror fans - those of us that want to laugh at the over-the-top gore, but still want over-the-top-gore, who want the sex scene to be let to go on a little bit longer than necessary, but also find the lampshade-hanging hilarious. It makes fun of all the slasher stuff, but it also revels in it; it repsects that yes, this stuff is absurd, but it's exploitation, it's escapism, it's just damn fun, like when Shaun of the Dead spent it's last twenty minutes going totally for broke.
If you're a horror fan, and you know a whole bunch of other horror fans, the night in this movie will give you is worth the RRP, let alone the ridicuous mark-down that Amazon is currently asking for.