Wednesday, January 6, 2010


The packaging for STAN HELSING proudly proclaims that its makers were responsible for the SCARY MOVIE and SOUL PLANE films. That should be all the information you need to decide whether or not it’s the sort of film you’ll enjoy. Me, it was a flashing neon warning sign, because I don’t find those kinds of alleged comedies even slightly amusing.

But it’s my job to watch these discs, so I gave STAN HELSING my best shot.

On Halloween night, slacker video clerk Stan Helsing (Steve Howey), accompanied by his sexy ex-girlfriend (Diora Baird), best friend (Kenan Thompson) and an exotic dancer/massage therapist (Desi Lydic), are on their way to a costume party. But, they’re forced to take a detour into a town cursed by lame rip-offs 80’s horror icons, including NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET's Freddy, FRIDAY THE 13th’s Jason , HELLRAISER’s Pinhead , TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE’s Leatherface, Chucky from CHILD'S PLAY, & HALLOWEEN's Michael Myers. Hijinks ensue.

I don’t know how to review this. These sorts of "parodies" don’t appeal to me in the slightest. Because they’re supposed to be hysterical simply because they irreverently reference familiar pop culture, things like wit, imagination, acting and production values don’t appear to be considered necessary. The whole movie looks like it was shot for about a hundred bucks on daddy’s camcorder, and the jokes – if that’s what they are - are obvious and flacid. Oh, and Leslie Nielsen shows up in a cameo, just to make clear the filmmaker’s intentions.

Still, people keep making these movies and other people keep going to see and rent them, so I’m probably just not the intended audience for this flick.

Anchor Bay has gone all-out with the Blu-Ray disc, beginning with a sharp 1.85:1 1080p widescreen transfer, 5.1 Dolby Surround sound, and a slew of supplements. These include a audio commentary track by director Bo Zenga and cast members Thompson and Lydic, a "Making Of" featurette, extended and deleted scenes, outtakes, the theatrical trailer and storyboards.

I didn’t like it. But if you dig these kinds of "parody films" (and I’m not judging you), you might want to give it a rental.

BUY: Stan Helsing [Blu-ray]