Saturday, August 29, 2009

Honourable Mentions: Skeleton Key 2: 667 Neighbour of the Beast

dvdSome time ago we looked at an indie version of Dracula named Alucard which I described as brave but suggested that director John Johnson had bitten off more than he could chew.

This was another film by Johnson, actually released in the same year as Alucard and was perhaps more in keeping with the low budget ethos. It was the sequel to a 2006 film by Johnson (Skeleton Key), which I have not seen but this was so topsy turvey that I doubt that mattered at all. It is perhaps best described as a fanboy film – for indeed that is what Johnson himself has it called in a moment during the film when the film we are watching is ‘reviewed’ and many of the
rip-off moments are sourced.

Conrad BrooksThe actual film begins with a very brief introduction by Conrad Brooks, as himself, and then we are with an unseen video store customer (as we are in POV) who is cornered by video store employee Neil (Liam Smith) and the customer has rented Skeleton Key 2. The customer is kidnapped and forced to watch the movie with Neil (who is in the movie).

a package from NilbogAfter a theme tune best described as an Addams Family rip-off we meet Howard (John Johnson) – the central character it seems from the first film. He has a secretary (Terry Chandeline Nicole Westfall) with a whipped cream bra and a girlfriend Sandy (Denise Shrader) who is cheating on him, at that time in the guest room, with another girl (Chelle Fire). The sight of them together causes him to abandon his suit and wear ripped up clothes. Then a package arrives from Nilbog (which, incidentally is the city in which Johnson set Alucard but in this seems to be a town in Virginia).

pizza shaped burnRealising he can’t watch a beta tape, a second package – with a DVD-r in it – arrives and depicts his friend Cornelius (Karthik Srinivasan) captured by zombies. He wonders how the packages arrived, opens the door and is attacked by a leprechaun (Hans Moore); but this is a vampire leprechaun, complete with fangs. Once it is defeated, by a lesbian wielding a pizza, it is explained to Howard that the leprechaun survived the sun by wearing sunblock, came back to life as the wood was pulled from his heart and was defeated due to garlic on the pizza. Indeed when we briefly see him later he has a pizza shaped burn on cheek.

the Bloufer Lady attacksThe only other vampire activity comes much later in the film when Howard is captured and handed to the Bloufer lady (Syn DeVil in a role performed, in the first film, by Debbie Rochan). Obviously the name is a corruption of the name given to the vampiric Lucy in Dracula. He is taken to a room and meets a girl (Eryka Soleil) who has travelled with them and doesn’t want to die a virgin – strangely, as she already had sex with Howard and two other girls. They get to it when the Bloufer Lady rises behind the couple and bites her, whilst two other vampire girls handcuff him where he lies.

staked by evilThey leave her body atop him, ready for when she turns and needs a meal. She bites him and he turns. He goes through the vampire ladies like a dose of salts feeding on them all. Eventually Evil (Michael McDonnell) – who seems to be Howard’s own personal manifestation of evil – has had enough as the man is acting even more evil than he. He stakes Howard and then brings him back, cured, using a 1up (as in a video game save).

busty and in perilThat’s it for vampires, indeed we mostly have blue skinned zombies in a film that isn’t good film making. It does have song moments – set to base toilet humour lyric wise – it has busty maidens (in this case Danielle Fluker) endangered by zombies and gratuitous breast shots to boot. It is silly, uncoordinated, badly acted with rubbish effects but you can tell the people involved had a hoot making it and that actually lifts it (despite itself) as you watch it. It is deconstructive, though those moments can be ham-fisted – but it just says to me I’d like to see what Johnson could do with some more budget and a blooming good script editor, it might be interesting but then again...

The imdb page is here.


Bill said...

This one actually got popped out of my player in the first few minutes. It was pretty amateurish I felt. The cover looked enticing and I doubt I will give it another go unless it is just a fast forward thing. You're a brave man to set through all of this.


Taliesin_ttlg said...

cheers Bill. It was amatuerish but it at least had a sense of fun (had by those involved) that kept it bouyant for a single watch. I couldn't get through it twice!