Distributed by Crash Media
Directed by Richard R. Anasky
Written by Richard R. Anasky and Garo Nigoghossian
For Mature Audiences
Running time: 90 Minutes
Written by Jon Minners
As a reviewer of all things entertainment, and I mean all things entertainment, I have been forced to view a number of really bad, almost laughable films and then I got a movie that makes fun of those same movies by pretending to be one of them itself. However, unlike those other films, none of which have been unfortunate enough to grace the pages of G-Pop, Actress Apocalypse is a total breath of fresh air; an ingeniously created film disguised as a really bad independent movie.
The film follows self-centered filmmaker David Lincoln, a cross between an anal Ross from Friends with a slow Southern drawl and a bad American Idol contestant who thinks he or she did well. Lincoln believes he is about to make one of the most horrifying slasher films ever made in the form of Clearwater Creek. He has so much confidence in himself that he allows a documentary film crew to record the making of his historic film, but the documentary only ends up uncovering how poorly crafted his vision actually is. You learn that the horror movie involves a murderous fat Indian and that the dialogue is horrible when Layla Black, the only actress who actually shows up as promised, reads her lines only to realize just how bad they are. After an outburst, Layla, played with a perfect balance of sarcasm, disbelief and outrage by Dahlia Legault, tells David Lincoln what she thinks of his project before storming off the set leaving the production for dead and Lincoln scrambling for ways to save his visionary masterpiece.
Backed by his psychotic brother Vance; Fernando, the cameraman who appears to be the only slightly normal character on the set; and a very eccentric boom man who goes by the name of The Golden Terror, David Lincoln goes about work to recast his movie in his vision. But Vance has other plans, hoping to make the film about a Gay Zombie of all things and eventually deciding to turn Clearwater Creek into Actress Apocalypse without his brother's knowledge. Taking control of the audition process, Vance does what he believes every movie producer does via a casting couch. Then he does what movie producers wish they can do, kill all the hot young actresses that remind them of the bitter, angry woman who trashed their movie in the first place. Yes, Vance becomes crazed and you learn he has a history of violence, set off again by Leyla, that results in a murderous rampage played out throughout the documentary.
This movie was absolutely hilarious. There are not too many smart dark comedies out there these days, but this movie achieves so much, never taking itself too seriously, but always acting intelligently when providing us with humor. The characters never stray from their roles in the film with Garo Nigoghossian truly stealing the show as the anal filmmaker who thinks just a little too highly of his abilities. I love when he fires his staff, believing he could do the whole movie by himself and says the most memorable line of the film, "I'm magical, like a leprechaun." Almost with perfect deadpan humor, after his brother kills an actress in the midst of an audition, he turns to him and says, "Because of you, we just made an illegal movie." Pay attention to his dialogue when he is pretending to kill one of the actresses during auditions. Absolutely hysterical. Also, the fact that he held director's summits to discuss non-eventful moments about a film that continues to be halted struck me as odd, but it was even funnier when he held those director summits after his brother killed an actress looking for a role in the film, chastising his brother in the same manner he would if his brother overslept and missed filming. The fact that he trusted his brother to run the auditions after he killed not one, but two people, just made the movie that much more laughable.
Then there is Greg G. Freeman, who plays the psycho killer role so well. It almost appears that he never rehearsed his lines and just improvised throughout the entire film and nailed it. Freeman, as Vance, compliments Nigoghossian's role in the film. In fact, with all the craziness and overzealous behavior by the other characters in Actress Apocalypse, Vance comes off as being the most real, staying true to the psycho that he really is and never apologizing for his actions, always knowing what he wants in the end. He's actually the hero of this film if you look past all the pesky killing. Jay Ingle as The Golden Terror is just so out there and unbelievable, he provides a distraction to all the murder toward the end of the film, maintaining the dark, cynical and morbid humor present in the first 45-minutes of the movie.
The soundtrack by Space Probe Taurus is included in the Two-Disc Unrated Edition of Actress Apocalypse and is a perfect fit for the film's dark nature; dark itself with a hard rocking beat and head banging vibe that truly showcases the band's talent and leaves you wanting more. These guys have a good sound worth checking out. Not cut from the same cloth as the other band used expertly well by Crash Media; Crashbox, they are still definitely the highlights of their genre.
Of course, I couldn't end this review without talking about the women. While fun to watch, make fun of and take interest in, the movie has so many other great qualities in the forms of hot women with bangin' bodies who have a propensity to take it all off, strip or make out with another girl. You have to applaud the filmmaker's foresight in including beautiful women that often do not find their way into low-budget independent films. Thank you kind sirs.
Also, whoever did the editing for Actress Apocalypse deserves a raise right now. The editing in the film was tremendous; fast paced, non-stop, full of little extras and just the perfect compliment to an already well crafted project. Besides endless shots of boobs, pay careful attention to messages shown throughout the film that just flash at your screen. I think the editing is what made this cinematic delight. It was smart and it helped to drive the point of the movie. It was the puzzle piece that put it all together, making Actress Apocalypse a fun ride worth watching at least once.
DVD extras include deleted scenes, bloopers and outtakes, cast interviews, a sexy stripper vignette and an extended shower scene involving two hotties that some people are going to want to watch a lot. It's just rare to find a film that works on so many levels. Crash Media, which was nice enough to provide us with the film for review at Icon 25, usually puts out Kung-Fu films, but they are branching out into a world of anime and independent movies. Actress Apocalypse was a wise choice of theirs to release. Only seen on the Independent Film Channel, Actress Apocalypse needs to find its way into your home. It's the movie that has just about everything going for it. See for yourself. This is a hidden treasure worth finding.