Friday, 17 April 2015
MOVIE: The Town That Dreaded Sundown (2014)
US 2014, Orion Pictures/Blumhouse, Cert 15
Distributor/DVD: Metrodome (UK)
It's 65 years since a masked serial killer was on the loose in the small town of Texarkana, and the elder residents are still smarting over the 1976 film which documented the crimes. A local drive-in decides to screen the movie amidst much protest, but there are bigger things to worry about as a series of copycat killings are about to tear the community apart again...
In an interesting twist on the usual reboot, this is part remake and part sequel, inhabiting a reality where the original film, and the killings therein are very much a part of the local fabric. Excerpts from the 1976 movie crop up all over the place, playing idly on TV sets or being studied as research by the law enforcers. Those familiar with the not-so-classic film will appreciate the visual references in the lookalike murders.
It does eventually try to double-twist itself that bit too much, but the 21st century model of The Town That Dreaded Sundown is an entertaining, occasionally inventive slasher which does manage the rare feat of improving on its source, although to be fair that can't have been difficult...
It's also nice to see MGM reviving the Orion Pictures name, but surely this should be American International territory?
In selected UK cinemas now, due on UK DVD on August 17th.