Monday, October 23, 2006


TALES FROM NETFLIX are DVD picks from off the beaten path, discs you may have never heard of, lurking at the bottoms of the new release list, or easy to miss on the video store wall of newness (if anyone still goes to those archaic places)...

This time though, I'm picking a flick that's not really that obscure, having been featured as the latest Project Greenlight winner, and having television advertising, and media buzz behind it. That said, FEAST, the new release in question, is definitely non-standard hollywood fair...

FEAST is first time director John Gulager's grand prize courtosey of Damon, Affleck, and crew's final Project Greenlight, the opportunity to helm a feature film. Unlike previous winners, Gulager's project is from the horror genre, and Feast is an in your face, all out, splatter fest at that! However, it's also a thrill ride of action/comedy despair, where a desert watering hole becomes a makeshift hideout for patrons from attacking lethal monsters.

Right from the start, Feast highlights unique directing, quirky characterization, and laugh out loud humor. Frequently taking horror situations and turning them on their ear. It's like Night of the Living Dead meets Tremors. Where the focus is not only on the impending doom our trapped cast must navigate, but also campy humuor that can strike just as suddenly. Limb severing, monster casterating, blood bathing, face peeling, maggot wrangling scenes come fast and hard, but it's all offset by just as much rapid fire humor. Scenes that would be just straight up hellish, are all played for hellish fun.

The cast are great, with Henry Rollins standing out as the motivational speaker who takes desperation monolguing to new levels (pure genious on the part of the writers), and Krista Allen as the victimized waitress turned throat punching eventual bad ass of the bunch.

Also of note, are the creatures and effects, as a glance at any of the special features will tip you off to the fact that though this was a full feature production, the budget was challenging at best. The filmakers had to make the most of the opportunity, by setting the story in one internal location, and utitlizing old school technologies for the special effects. The creatures and everything in the film utilize technologies from the 1980's, with no cg shots due to cost, but instead of it being a hinderence, it's another strong suit. The creatures are fun, feral, and wild, with more character and nuance than their costly perfectly pixelated counterparts.

If you like old school horror, in your face action, camp, raunchy humor, or explosively deviant fun, Feast is truly a feast for your senses. While it's not blazing a new path in high concept, it does crackle with creativity, and I can't remember the last time I had this much fun with a movie, start to finish! (Okay, maybe it was the similarly skewed, but more uneven horror/comedy Dead and Breakfast)

The original trailer...

The new one...

Check out previous Tales From Netflix:
Sars Wars
House of 9
2001 Maniacs

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