MOVIE REVIEW: ‘Slender Man’ – Lean on story, light on Horror

“About as scary as an episode of R.L. Stine’s ‘Goosebumps’”

30-SECOND REVIEW:

It SHOULD be scarier than it is. Unfortch, it is not. It’s about as scary as an episode of R. L. Stine’s ‘Goosebumps’ lol 😛  which is discrediting ‘Goosebumps’ as a fun little fright-fest for young kids. But when your theater had little kids in attendance like mine did, and caused ZERO screams? That ain’t good.

FULL REVIEW

Jay here! So I went and watched ‘Slender Man‘ as part of my other podcast (pulling double-duty, folks!) – check me out at Kill the Dead podcast as well 🙂

Here’s the thing; Urban legends have been around for decades. My favorite being Bloody Mary, where you turn off the lights, face a mirror, and say her name 5x – expecting her to appear. As a kid, that would scare the living daylights out of me! And now, thanks to the internet, urban legends have taken on new life in the form of ‘found footage’ and photos going viral.

That last part is the basis for ‘Slender Man’, the story of a spooky viral internet meme – or ‘creepypasty’ if you will. In today’s world, tricky photography and made up mythology can become part of the social consciousness within days! I’ve seen Slender Man footage on YouTube. It is some truly disturbing shit! Too bad this movie doesn’t hold up to the memes.

Slender Man the movie should be about a modern viral internet boogyeman come to life. Instead it relies on mostly overdone horror themes and borrows ideas from better films: Ouji. The Ring. Sinister. It Follows, Hell, even Nightmare on Elm Street.

There was nothing remotely original nor interesting about this movie. Matter fact, I was WAITING for the girls to die just to get it over with.

How many times do we need to see young girls fall victim to bad ideas? Hasn’t that been done 100x by now? It’s not enough anymore to have teenage girls reciting chants and run around the woods in distress. ‘Cabin in the Woods’ (awesome movie!) put that to rest years ago.

Especially in our current political climate. These girls are mindless throwbacks from 2 generations ago. Completely helpless. Clueless. Incapable. Unable to navigate modern technology outside of texting. Forget ‘Girl Power’… These chicks are horror chowder. At one point the protagonist was more distressed about her makeup than her missing friend. I’m not exaggerating. Very disappointing.

As for scary? fugheddaboutit. The laziest horror tactics are used, and not effectively. Seriously, no one in this movie ever turns on any lights, EVER. How many scenes were done in 90% darkness, simply because no one in this universe bothers to click on a light switch? When your only reliable scare tactic rely on trees and darkness? You’ve already lost.

As crazy as this may sound, the Slender Man movie actually damages the Slender Man internet meme! The movie doesn’t do the legend enough justice. We don’t know anything new about the Slender Man than whatever is found online – is he a shadow person? A wood demon (The Ritual)? An urban legend brought to life (Candyman)? The vengeful spirit of a serial killer (Freddie Krueger)? Does he prey on fears? On the souls of children (Sinister)? We never really know…and I don’t think the filmmakers know either.

There are lots of disturbing creepypasta on YouTube that will keep you up late nights. This movie on the other hand, was a snooze-fest. A whole lot of Not Much happens, and it doesn’t happen fast enough. Maybe if Guillermo del Toro was involved it would at least been interesting to look at. Sadly, no. This didn’t warrant a major motion picture release. It probably would have been MORE effective as a (wait for it) viral internet found footage video

Stick to the original YouTube vids. They are scarier than the movie.

RATING

(out of 5 Slenders)

 

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