Imagine you're settling in to watch any of the random horror flicks I happen to have listed on the site. You pop in the VHS tape, hit play, and settle back for duration. All is well for about the first 10 minutes; then something happens. The movie cuts out and is replaced by the face of Max. Max is a serial killer, and he's hijacked this video tape to place the videos of his own murders and mutilations for your enjoyment. Is it real? Is it an art exhibit? Is it a recruitment video for his next victim? You be the judge.
Seemingly a direct descendant of the older French serial killer opus "Man Bites Dog", "The Last Horror Movie" takes on the documentary feel as we follow this serial killer around on his daily business. Sometimes we see him in the act, sometimes we only catch the aftermath.
Throughout, the film is narrated by Max, the personable serial killer taking us on this off-the-wall journey through the mind of a madman. Sure, we've seen a lot of mockumentaries, and some of you probably wrote them off after "Blair Witch" came and went. "The Last Horror Movie" puts these same tricks to use but in a different way. No longer are we annoyed by shaky cameras; it is actually an important plot device and well used without.
Kevin Howarth as serial killer Max is really the only actor of note in the flick. There are other people involved but they are either glanced over quickly or are dead in a matter of minutes. This means the sole person carrying this flick is Mr. Howarth; thankfully he pulled the task off well.
"Sometimes we have to behave the way other people think we should."
Max is portrayed as a friendly and personable enough bloke. Quick witted, somewhat meek, he's the antithesis of the 'they look like everybody else' school of serial killer thought. Until the end when he shows just how far off the end of the pier he's traveled, you really can't help but to like the guy.
The writing pairs with Howarth's deliver quite well also. Many times the narrative steers you to an obvious plot point until it veers off in another direction, suddenly leaving you befuddled, or some times relieved. There was definitely a time or two where I thought to myself 'whoa, he's not going to be that nuts is he?' Thankfully he wasn't. The true mastery though comes when just as you're getting used to these sudden detours of thought...the tables turn and as it turns out, yes, he really is that batshit insane.
Great writing and a great lead make for a great flick in "The Last Horror Movie". You'll find this in the bargain bin with the "Fangoria" logo on it, which generally doesn't scream "must see". This time around however it is well worth it. It's a fun flick and will make you happy that nobody rents VHS anymore. Let's just hope there’s no kooks’ working at Netflix!