Blood, Guts, Maggots, Monsters and most of all Insanity- FEAST is destined to be an Instant Cult Classic
Nearly two years ago I was one of the lucky individuals who got to see a special test screening of Dimension Films’ Project Greenlight Season 3’s winning movie FEAST, which was directed by John Gulager and written by Marcus Dunston and Patrick Melton. I thought the movie was OK and really needed some work, especially a new ending. I had my complaints, yet thought the film had serious potential. After over two years I finally got to see the final cut of the film and was extremely excited to see what they had done- I’m happy to report that it only got better. FEAST is destined to become an instant classic within the horror community and I’m quite sure when the DVD is released it won’t be leaving my DVD player for quite sometime.
The film follows a group of strangers trapped inside a brewery fighting to survive against a bunch of evil creatures looking for a delightful snack. They are indescribable beasts that look like something H.P Lovecraft would dream up. They have razor sharp teeth, tons of goo, lug around little baby monsters and wears masks made from dead animals. The FX on these creatures were magnificent, a true spectacle for any hardcore horror nut. Anyways, these people are trapped in a bar as these monsters are outside trying to get in for their snack. Things aren’t too out of control until Henry Rollins’ character takes the corpse of a little monster and drops it out a window to “show mankind’s dominance.” After they realize they killed the monster’s baby, all hell breaks loose.
The story is simple and the plot is extremely trite, which is why the decision to make the film self aware was brilliant. There’s nothing worse than watching a film that thinks it’s original, but it’s not. The Weinstein’s knew this was nothing ground-breaking, so why not work around the clichés with a good laugh? For the most part it worked and it worked well. Take everything you know about a typical horror film and throw it all away. A little boy dies right off the bat, leaving a mother sonless; a girl escapes out the back of the bar and is supposed to bring the truck to the bar, instead she drives off; the obvious hero and heroine die way before their time… you get the point. There’s no way to predict what’s to come, which is a great thing in a genre that’s just become way too predictable.
The original cut had no boundaries and was all over the place, but since then things have really been tightened up. It’s difficult because the film ranges from a drama to a comedy to a splatter film and to keep it intense from start to finish isn’t an easy task. What I suggested two years ago was that they needed to embrace the gore and cut out all the bullshit in between- and that they did.
The movie opens with one of the most intense bloody and disgusting scenes I’ve seen in years. There are legs blown off, heads eaten, maggots unleashed and a little monster ripping people’s faces off- we even get to see the monster humping a deer head on the tavern wall- freaking hilarious. But seriously, this movie is f-cking bloody; there are gallons and gallons of blood used, which still isn’t enough in my opinion.
Another plus to the film was that not only was Jason Mewes (Jay from Clerks) in the film, but so was Henry Rollins. Anyone who knows Henry Rollins knows he’s a motivational speaker, so it was hilarious that he played one in FEAST! The acting was OK, but the screenplay really made the performances suffer. Some of the dialogue is just plain laughable….
In the original cut there wasn’t as much action with the camera and it was obvious the film hadn’t been color corrected yet. What I saw last night looked astronomically better and visually more entertaining. Instead of starring at a well-lit boring long shot, I was watching a gritty and action packed cult classic. It’s amazing what can be done in post production these days.
In the end FEAST is a fun flick that gore hounds will eat up. It’s not to be taken serious (at all) and is only meant for you to sit back and be entertained. If you’re interested in more than blood, maggots and monster vomit, this feast is not for you, this film is meant for the die-hard horror fans of the world. Like I said before, FEAST will be an instant cult classic and I guarantee you’ll be watching it more than once. If you have the chance make sure to check it out in theaters, having a good audience will only make this meal all the better.
OLD REVIEW BELOW from January 5, 2005:
This review is for one of the first cuts of the movie. The sound and color weren’t perfected and the ending has been completely changed since then. Also from what I understand another $2 million has been stuck into this pic.
Blood, Guts, Maggots, Insanity- and Boredom
I was one of the lucky individuals who got to see a special test screening of Dimension Films’ Project Greenlight Season 3’s winning movie ‘Feast,’ which was directed by John Gulager and written by Marcus Dunston and Patrick Melton. Before I dive into my thoughts, I’d like to point out that this is a workprint and the sound and FX were not completed yet. There could also be some major changes with the final version because from the sound of things people really hated the end of the film.
I can sum this baby up in one sentence- the entire finale of ‘From Dusk Till Dawn.’ The film follows a group of strangers trapped inside a brewery fighting to survive against a bunch of evil creatures looking for a delightful snack. No they’re not vampires, they are indescribable beasts that look like something H.P Lovecraft would dream up. They have razor sharp teeth, tons of goo, little babies and masks. Oh did I mention they have no rules?
‘Feast’ made sure to throw away the rule book and do whatever they wanted- for some of the film it worked, for the other half it did not. In the beginning of the film it is established that light distracts these creates- yeah somehow they figure that out. By the end, they can be destroyed by light, and even further past that they can survive light… you keeping up? Neither could I. There’s no clear cut hero because people drop dead like flies. One thing that rocked was that a lot of the clichés are thrown out the door. For example, during a scene a girl is supposed to escape, get a car and bring it back for them. Well it all works fine and dandy until she drives off without them! Hilarious stuff!
The movie has no boundaries and is all over the place. First it’s a Tarantino movie, then it’s a splatter film, then it’s a drama, then it’s a comedy, then it’s a horror film, then it’s a splatter film, then they didn’t know what to do so they copped out an ending. This movie could and I stress the word could be kick ass with some major retooling. They need to work on the look of the film, the sound, and the pacing. I was bored out of my mind for the second act. There are a bunch of character driven moments and dramatic sequences that we don’t need in a film that should be a splatter flick.
What they need to do is embrace the gore and cut out all the bullshit in between. The movie opens with one of the most intense bloody and disgusting (no pun intended) scenes since the end of ‘Dead Alive.’ There are legs blown off, heads eaten, maggots unleashed and a little monster ripping people’s faces off (sorry Jason Mewes, it looked painful). We even get to see the monster humping a deer head on the tavern wall- fucking hilarious. But seriously, this movie is fucking bloody; there is gallons and gallons of blood unleashed. Too bad Dimension owns the rights, so that means what you will all see is a monster, then some drama, then a bad ending. Watch this sucker hit DVD because they refuse to listen to us FANS of the fucking genre!
Another plus to the film was that not only was Jason Mewes (Jay from Clerks) in it, but so was Henry Rollins. Anyone who knows Henry Rollins knows he’s a motivational speaker, so it was hilarious that he played one in the movie! The acting was pretty good over all, but the script really made the performances suffer. What was going on? It was a disaster.
Here’s how to fix the film. Show less of the monsters, keep the gore, cut out a flashback scene explaining a little history of the monsters, remove this woman’s child from the film completely and all of her emotional breakdowns over it and totally erase the female bonding. Reshoot the ending and you’re golden. It’s a lot of work, but you want to make money, you got to do what’s right for the film! I need to warn you in advance, there’s a huge spoiler coming up, I’m going to ruin the end of the film, but I must to prove my point. [SPOILER BEGIN] The entire end sequences show the team beating the fuck out of these monsters. They’re hit with bombs, axes, you name it. The point is, they’re surviving- barely. Instead of taking out the last few monsters by hand, they have the “sun rise” and I guess that kills these beasts because they all die. Movie fin. Crap. Cop out. Garbage. [END SPOILER]
In the end it’s a fun flick that gore hounds will eat up. I would watch it again purely for the level of reds flowing. But if you’re interested in more than blood, maggots and monster vomit, this is not for you. Fix the misses and it might just end up a cult classic.