I went into watching Scream Park with a fresh mind. I hadn’t read the summary on the sell sheet, and I opted to stay away from the IMDB page. I really have a thing for horror films based in amusement parks and circuses. Thank you so much to Left Films for sending me this one.
Directed by Cary Hill
Starring Doug Bradley, Wendy Wygant, Steve Rudzinski…
“A failed amusement park owner devises a plan to commit gruesome murders in the park as a publicity stunt to sell tickets.”
Before getting right into it, the general atmosphere of the movie had a real 80’s b-movie slasher feel to it which was by no means a bad thing. It’s personally a favourite horror theme of mine, because despite the low budget, it’s entertaining and it keeps you, the viewer in the moment in a real tongue-in-cheek way.
We begin the film in the ‘theme’ park, being introduced to each character who each has a different job there and from the start, we get a really evident trope for each characters, the promiscuous ones, the creepy one, the misfit and the ‘virgin’: which can almost act as a throwback to traditional slasher movies, and although it’s been done time and time again, here, we get a good feel for each of the characters and how they’re going to act as the film unfolds. Usually with these kinds of movies, there’ll be characters that I instantly dislike from sight but I am surprised to say that I didn’t find any of the characters particularly dislikable. Each individual character brought something a little different to the table, adding a new sense of depth to the movie itself, despite some awkwardly delivered lines here and there. I found that some characters were quite over the top with the delivery of their lines which were often ridiculous, though I think it added to the overall entertainment factor, sticking with the b-movie feel. One character that really stood out to me was Missi (Nicole Beattie) who was a really stereotypical goth girl with a general distaste for many things. She was so hilarious to watch, and I really enjoyed her character and the way she brought that stereotype to life.
Aside from the main characters, the teens that work at the theme park, we had the killers. Two looming figures that stalked through the park after hours as the teens were having a celebration party to themselves. The killers were actually very mesmerising on screen, and one of them did a lot of speaking, which I found to be interesting. He was amusing, and I actually found myself laughing at his mannerisms and dialogue. I really liked that they gave one of the killers a personality as the other stayed mute, it was a really unique balance that paid off in the end. From the sell sheet I received, it mentioned that Doug Bradley (Pinhead from the Hellraiser series) would be a star in the movie. I’ve always been a huge fan of the Hellraiser series and Doug Bradley has always been one of my favourite horror actors. He was incredible as always: his feature in the film kept pushing throwback vibe, and to be honest, I did get a little giddy when I first saw him on screen and he didn’t disappoint at all.
With regards to the camera work and the atmosphere of the movie, I personally enjoyed the near deadpan feel that the cinematography gave off. Deadpan in horror is a personal favourite feel of mine, making the horror that’s unfolding on the screen seem almost real and that little more unsettling overall. The nighttime setting added suspense to chase scenes and especially scenes in which the characters are hiding from killers, giving the sense of ‘will they or won’t they find them?’ You feel like you’re there in the situation with the character, in a sense. Without spoiling anything, I think the ending was really welI done, and I definitely think you should check this one out if you get the chance, it’s a great flick for an evening horror marathon. Let me know what you thought of Scream Park in the comments below.
I gave Scream Park 4 skulls out of 5 (☠☠☠☠.)
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