Wednesday, February 13, 2013

A 2-4-1 Special of Horror Films Starring Corin Nemec PART I

Confessions of a Film Junkie: A 2-4-1 Special of Corin Nemec in Horror Films
By: Brian Cotnoir

     I found it a little strange to see that in a span of one year Corin Nemec was featured in four films where he either played a Serial Killer or psychopath.  He played the leading roles in films based on the crimes of two notorious American Serial Killers, Richard Speck and Ted Bundy.  He was also featured in the horror film “Boston Strangler: The Untold Story”, strangely enough acting alongside his good friend David Faustino who played Albert DeSalvo/The Boston Strangler.  Also Nemec was featured in another film in 2008 where played a psychopath. I just don’t understand why Nemec would be “type-casted” into those types of roles.  Anyone who has seen an episode of “Parker Lewis Can’t Lose” or other comedy works that Nemec has done, know that he is pretty funny guy.  I don’t understand why he would be casted or even want to be casted in a horror film; I mean he does so poorly in them.  Horror Comedy’s he’s great in because he’s usually the comedic relief, but in straight up horror films, he’s not just bad, he’s is absolutley awful!  So this week I will be reviewing two Horror Films that Corin Nemec has starred in; “Chicago Massacre: Richard Speck” (Non-fictional Horror) and “My Apocalypse” (Fictional Horror).

Chicago Massacre: Richard Speck (2007)

One of the easiest Sub-genre’s of Horror to get away with writing is the “Serial Killer Bio-pic”.  The story is already written for you all you have to do is pick a serial killer and condense their crimes and motives into 90 minutes. There are good serial killer films (ex. “Dear Mr. Gacy”) and there are bad serial killer films (ex. “Ed Gein: the Butcher of Plainfield”).  In regards to the film I’m reviewing this week—“Chicago Massacre: Richard Speck” it has got to be the worst serial killer biography/horror movie I have ever seen.  This is one of those times where I honestly don’t have at least one positive thing to say about this film it’s so bad.                          
The Real Richard Speck

    The story—as you may have already guessed from the title—is the true story about a career criminal named Richard Speck and the events of his life that led him to commit a gruesome massacre on a group of nursing students in a Chicago college dormitory in 1966.  The film is told from two perspectives; one being the perspective of the killer Richard Speck, played by actor Corin Nemec, and the other is told from the perspectives of one of the detectives trying to solve the murder.                 
Nemec, playing Serial Killer Richard Speck
This is just an awful film.  Corin Nemec is so over-the-top as the mass-murderer Richard Speck that he’s more laughable then terrifying.  He’s slow, he’s ugly, and he says the most moronic things.  Nemec tried way too hard for this role and it shows.  His speech is so slurred in some parts of the film that even when I turned the subtitles on they still read “Inaudible Dialogue”.  The dialogue is all very cliché to.  I found no original lines of dialogue that I could recite from memory.  I would describe Nemec’s character as the twin brother of Aaron Stampler from “Primal Fear” who didn’t get enough oxygen at birth and now he has the I.Q. of a sack of potatoes.  Nemec isn’t the only bad actor in this film.  As a matter of fact every actor in the films is horrible. All the drama and intensity of the film is sucked out by all these poor actors, and it makes you feel pissed off and confused instead of scared. Not one person in this film gave a competent performance.              
     The pacing of the film is terrible and just jumps all over the place.  I actually thought that there were a number of scenes in the film that just felt random and out of order, but after doing some research I found out that those scenes were actually supposed to be flashbacks.  There was no hint whatsoever that the film was transitioning to a flashback at any point, and these random flashbacks in the film only add to the confusion of the story, rather than help explain a motive or reasons why.  Also, I think that the Detective in this film solved this crime way too easily, and I do believe that it had everything to do with the pacing of the film.  The Detective just appeared to get one hint of a description and, bam, he knew who he was looking for and he just happened to catch him in the most convenient way possible.  For crying out loud Sherlock Holmes couldn’t pull an answer to a crime that quickly out of his a$$.  
    Something tells me that this is the one film that Corin Nemec purposely leaves off of his resume.  Just don’t even bother trying to watch this film, because if you do you’re only going to be confused, bored, and disappointed.  “Chicago Massacre: Richard Speck” is hands-down the Worst Serial Killer Horror movie I have ever seen, and probably one of the worst horror movies ever made.  It. Sucks.

My Apocalypse (2008)

     All right before I begin to talk about this film, here is some background:  The film was originally titled “Quality Time”, and it was filmed in 1997, but do to a lack of funding and a striving to have his artistic vision realized, the film’s director, Chris LaMont, did not release the film until 2008.  I can understand why the film’s director would want to hold off on releasing his own film, but still, eleven years is an ridiculously long time for a film to be released after it was finished filming.  
God, this was Awkward
The film is set in the future where the world has been destroyed by the melting of the polar ice caps, and it’s about a young sociopath killer named, Stewart Savage.  Stewart’s parents are well aware that their son has mental problems and is prone to acts of extreme violence, but they still let him live with them and make excuses for his sociopathic tendencies.  Stewart lives in a tiny apartment with his mother and father, but due to a lack of inhabitable surface on the planet and a lack of funds, Stewart’s family is forced to alternate sharing the apartment throughout the day with another family, the Eastman’s.  On the day of his father’s birthday, Stewart decides to hold his parents and the Eastman’s hostage in his apartment so they can play party games.  Now Stewart’s parents and the Eastman’s are all just Pons to the ever delusional Stewart’s plans for happiness and grandeur.                                           
     Well first of all, a comment for the film’s director: Mr. LaMont, waiting those years to receive the funding so you can have your CGI in your film, was not worth it.  The CGI in this film is just bad.  I’ve seen better CGI on the History Channel’s Modern Marvels.  The camera shots are so blurry and grainy, like it was filmed on a very poor quality of film.  There are scenes in the film where Stewart retreats into his mind and we get to see the world, from his delusional fantasies and the picture quality becomes fuzzier and it looks so bad.  Also, there are points in the film where the other character’s faces randomly become distorted.  I’m sure if the film was better made it would represent something like Stewart’s perception of his situation becoming distorted, but in reality it looks like a crappy effect and it looks really stupid.
The Film is so grainy and distorted!
I believe I heard that this film originally was a stage play that got adapted into a screen play, and I’d buy that.  The dialogue and the characters all look and sound like they belong on stage and not on camera.  One thing that confuses me though is the film is 80 minutes long and it was written by three people: That’s roughly 27 pages per writer!  I think making a film is a lot more difficult when you’re trying to combine the ideas of three writers as opposed to just one.  Hell, even two writers probably could have written a better script than this! 
     Lastly the acting.  It’s bad, it’s all bad, and I’m not sure if it has to do with the dialogue, or the character development, but yeah it’s all pretty awful.  One character, Victor Eastman, doesn’t say much and he spends most of the film just sitting against the wall and touching it.  I’m not sure if his character was supposed to be a mute or have “special needs”?  I don’t know what was his deal was.  To be perfectly honest the film could have gotten rid of him and I don’t think it would have affected the plot in any way.                                  
     As for Corin Nemec in this film, I can’t really blame him for being bad.  This was filmed 10 years before he took the role in “Chicago Massacre”, and I think he probably never saw this film.  I think if it was released a year or two after it was filmed, that some studios would have reconsidered casting him in a horror film, but I can’t blame him entirely for being bad in this film.  He’s okay, in the scenes where he has his delusions and acts like he’s back on a TV sitcom, but as a sociopath and murderer, I’m still not buying him.                          
     The best way I can describe this film is cheap.  Cheaply made, cheap sets, and character’s who aren’t really likeable or enjoyable.  My advice is to also avoid this film, not because just because it’s bad, but it’s really, really boring.  Corin Nemec, please stay away from horror films, and go back to making us laugh in quirky comedies.  You’re really good at that at least.        

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