Sunday, October 18, 2009
31 Days of Halloween - Day 18 - Movie 2
"Jack Brooks: Monster Slayer" (2007) has to have some of the worst DVD cover art around, which is a shame, because it will most likely turn away a lot of people who would otherwise enjoy this movie. This movie had been recommended to me a few times so I decided to give it a shot and am pleased I did so.
When Jack Brooks was a boy he witnessed his family being slaughtered by some sort of monster. Now, Jack is a plumber with some serious anger management problems. He's also taking a night school science class with a kindly professor who becomes the host to an ancient demonic entity set on either devouring Jack's fellow students, or turning them into murderous creatures. It is here that Jack finds direction in life as he strikes back against these monsters and attempts to rescue his classmates.
While the movie begins with some unconvincing natives in an unconvincing tropical setting battling a nicely done cyclops, it didn't take long to pull me in and keep me engaged. Jack (and most of the other characters) may not be particularly likable, but they are convincing, layered characters who feel real, defined by very credible performances by capable actors who actually look like real people. The script was well written. The movie was well filmed and had good music, and the monsters themselves were well done. It was also refreshing to see monster suits, rather than poor cgi creatures, particularly in a film that must have had a pretty limiting budget. There's a 1980s feel to this movie, though it looks better than most movies filmed during that period. Robert Englund sympathetically plays the kindly science professor who is taken over by the ancient entity.