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STUDIO: MVD Visual
RATED: Not Rated
RUNNING TIME: 71 minutes
• Cast commentary
• Writer commentary
• Two music videos
• Behind the scenes
• Alternate takes
A masked killer is carving his way through the U.S., targeting stock characters and homosexual campers.
Written and directed by Steve Rudzinski, starring Nick LaMantia, Nicole Beattie, Aleen Isley, and Seth Joseph.
Everyone Must Die is an enthusiastic yet unremarkable entry into the low-budget slasher genre. Aside from some impressive-looking kills, there is little to enjoy here. I’m all for campy slashers, but the characters, acting, and humor here take it down another notch to unwatchable territory. Also, the killer on the cover looks like Snake Eyes, which is very misleading.
It may not seem like it, but making a campy, low-budget slasher film that actually works is difficult. The formula is so worn nowadays that creating something fresh and digestible is a task only the truly inventive can pull off. The filmmakers of Everyone Must Die make a noble effort, but despite some clever kills and an okay twist they aren’t able to make all of the pieces work together.
As you’ve probably guessed from the title, a lot of people die in this film. We begin in medias res with the climax of a confrontation between a masked killer in ninja garb and some kids. He manages to stab a woman before being mutilated with a lawnmower by her boyfriend. The woman’s brother, Kyle (Nick LaMantia), doesn’t believe that the killer is dead. A paranoid newscaster confirms his disbelief when he reveals that the killer has been committing mass murders across the U.S. Using the reporter’s calculations, Kyle heads off to the killer’s next target city.
Then we cut to a classic slasher scenario: two couples camping in the woods. The filmmakers playfully overturn expectations here, by having the couples both be gay. One of the campers is awful white rapper MC Pink, who speaks only in rhyme. This gimmick is supposed to be funny, but the humor really isn’t there. It’s just annoying. Luckily, he along with the other three campers are disposed of by the killer and then we jump to…
Another group of poorly fleshed out victims who have come together to get drunk and mourn the death of MC Pink. Among this group is a football jock, a Jewish golfer, a rich snob, and a guy who only talks about eggs. Seriously, he just talks about eggs. Again, I’m pretty sure this is supposed to be funny, but it just comes off stupid. Likewise, the jock only talks about football and the Jew golfer only talks about golf. Even when they make sexual innuendos, those are based on their stereotype. “Then I’m gonna give it to her in the back nine.” – that’s a reference to anal sex, you see.
The humor in the film is atrocious. There’s a hardly a joke not about sex and each one is catering to a dumb audience. Maybe it’s just me, but that type of shit doesn’t cut it anymore. A slasher can be smart, not just gory. Also, it’s important that the audience actually care about at least one of the characters. There are no real stakes if the entire cast can be wiped out without the audience rooting for anyone.
If there’s one character in EMD to root for it’s Jenny (Nicole Beattie). She was the only one who wasn’t a stock character and managed to display more than one dimension. That’s another thing with these kids – Jenny seems like a genuinely nice person, so why is she hanging out with a gang of dicks? All of them appear to dislike each other and I don’t believe for a second they would hang out in real life. If I was a Jewish golfer and someone was like “Hey, wanna come hang with my football jock friend?” I’d be like “No, it doesn’t seem like we would get along at all.” Screw it, kill em all.
And that’s just what happens. The body count is very high in the film and some of the kills are pulled off really well. The slashes, throat cuts, and other knife-induced injuries all look great. There are a few CG-enhanced blood sprays, but nothing that takes away from the effect. So, bravo in this department. Like I argued earlier though, a slasher needs more than cool effects. It’s not a terrible movie, but it’s a wholly unremarkable entry into the genre.
If you actually dug the film, then you’ll dig the wealth of bonus features.
There are two commentary tracks: one with writer/director Steve Rudzinski and actors Seth Joseph, Aleen Isley, and Scott Lewis. The other features Rudzinski and co-writer Derek Rothermund. These are the type of commentaries you wish more films would have. You can tell these kids are hungry and rabidly enthusiastic about making movies. The provide some pretty interesting insight, particularly when the writers discuss making their kill list.
MC Pink Music Video: he raps about doing a cop.
EMD Music Video: some metal shit cut with clips from the film.
Behind the Scenes: features interviews with cast and crew. They talk about the usual, as well as the trappings of independent filmmaking.
Alternate takes of a guy screaming.
Rating: Out of a Possible 5 Stars
Out of a Possible 5 Stars