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Slaxx

Canada 2020
produced by
Patricia Gomez, Anne-Marie Gélinas, Shaked Berenson (executive) for EMA Films, Téléfilm Canada, Entertainment Squad
directed by Elza Kephart
starring Romane Denis, Brett Donahue, Sehar Bhojani, Kenny Wong, Tianna Nori, Erica Anderson, Stephen Bogaert, Jonathan Emond, Jessica B. Hill, Pritha Mazumdar, Hanneke Talbot, Amanda Chiu, Elizabeth Neale, Aris Tyros
written by Patricia Gomez, Elza Kephart, music by Delphine Measroch, special effects by Blood Brothers FX, visual effects by Alchemy 24

review by
Mike Haberfelner

Available on DVD !

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It's Libby's (Romane Denis) first day at a store of the super exclusive CCC fashion brand that's run by messiah-like Harold Landsgrove (Stephen Bogaert), a posterboy of social and ecological responibility who even likes to call his shops eco systems. For her first day, Libby has already pulled an allnighter as the store is preparing for Monday Madness, which also marks the unveiling of the Super Shaper, jeans that by themselves adjust to the size of one's body. So it's going to be a busy night, but Libby's too excited to care - and then she's asked by store manager Craig (Brett Donahue) to look for two other store clerks (Jessica B. Hill, Hanneke Talbot), who have gone missing on the job but must be inside the building because it's under lockdown for the duration of the preparations. Libby finds them - dead and brutally murdered, but when she reports that to Craig, he persuades her to help him hide the bodies as there's no way to communicate with the outside world anyways, they don't want to create a panic, and of course a scandal would hurt the brand and likely close down at least this store and cost Libby her job. What they don't know of course is that one of the Super Shaper pants has come to life and is currently wandering around the building killing people. Of course, when Libby finds yet another body, she draws the line and insists on getting word out - maybe with Peyton Jules (Erica Anderson), an "influencer" who has been granted exclusive entry into the store for one hour for publicity. Craig knocks Libby out to prevent just that - while in the shop, Peyton is strangled by the killer pants in front of a camera and the entire staff, and then the pants go berserk and kills the everyone on the floor, safe for Shruti (Sehar Bhojani), an absent-minded Indian store clerk who just loves to listen to Bollywood music on her phone, and when the pants hear the music, they stop killing and break out into dance ...

Eventually, Libby, Craig and Shruti all manage to bunker themselves in inside Craig's office, and try to communicate with the pants - and they find out they're possessed by the soul of a 13 year old Indian girl (Pritha Mazumdar) who got killed working on the cotton fields falling into the machine processing cotton. Now that all throws the company's policy of social ecological responsibility into doubt of course, and Libby and Shruti promise the pants to expose this to put the pants at peace - but Craig has other ideas, locks Libby and Shruti into a warehouse of pants just waiting to be awoken like the killer pants, and asks for the evidence they have in return for their freedom - and suddenly our heroines find themselves in a horrible situation. But has Craig really thought his plan through?

 

Of course, the mere premise of Slaxx is pretty outrageous and also slightly ridiculous - but very much in the tradition of horror satires from the 1980s like The Stuff or the Czech Ferat Vampire, this movie mixes its rather wild concept withbiting commentary on hyper-consumerism and the companies profiting from it. And it's true, Slaxx is a bit blunter in delivering its message than above movies, to the point where it's spelled out, but it sure has fun spinning its yarn, and the fun is 100% infectuous to its audience, making this one very entertaining flick.

 

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review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Tales to Chill
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Tales to Chill
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Out now from
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On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
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out now on DVD