Review by BigBadWolfBoy
Hackmovies.com founder Kevin Strange is back with Dead Shit- The Talisman of Tikinaya! If you’ve seen his bad taste opus Dream Reaper, or if you’ve visited his website at hackmovies.com, you already know that Strange’s goal is to make fun, offensive features and shorts on the cheap, and to have a great time doing it. Dead Shit is no exception. Like the rest of his films, this is a movie made almost exclusively for his rapidly growing fan base, and despite its zero-budget production, it delivers.
Nixon and Hogan are two pot-smoking losers who have to hold off on getting high in order to battle a demonic mistress and her horde of zombies. That’s about it. And at around 30 minutes long, that’s also about right.
The key here is that Strange and his cast of regulars are genuinely having a good time making this, and it shows. The acting isn’t so much acting as it is caricature- and to be honest my first few minutes with Strange and co-star Joshitsuo Montoya’s characters had me feeling a little dubious. They combine Jim Carrey’s love of striking goofy facial poses with Adam Sandler’s insistence upon using odd voices, and it made me nervous.
But it grew on me. Started with a giggle, then a snort (can I get a ‘hotel’ or am I showing my age?), and soon I was snickering throughout. Same can be said regarding the humor. Like I said, Kevin Strange wants to be offensive. In this film the primary way he does it is by having his characters be not only pot-smoking losers, but misogynistic pot-smoking losers who love the word ‘motherfuckin’ as well. It is offensive, but it isn’t mean-spirited.
Yeah, the zombie horde is comprised of about six or seven people stumbling around in grayish-green facepaint. Yes, the demonic hussy who pops up at the end is brandishing an awfully plastic-ey looking head-chopper. Yes the entire thing was, as most Hack Movies have been, shot on video in someone’s back yard. But look, the demonic hussy also compares herself to Voltron, which is beautiful. And at some point I think there’s a ‘+5 Yard Rake’ invoked, which is brilliant.
The camera work is a mixed bag- some shots are staged well, others are slightly awkward and shaky. I would have liked to see Strange embrace the spirit of his indie horror forefathers and just go crazy with camera, as I think it would have suited the dialogue. And there are a few bits where the background noise becomes obtrusive. But that’s what you get with indie horror, and Strange does a good job of keeping the unavoidable to a minimum.
It’s obvious that Kevin Strange made this movie for people who love offensive films, video games, weed, and the Insane Clown Posse- or any combination thereof. It isn’t for everyone, but for those who love their indie horror done with affection and a sense of fun, then I say give Dead Shit a try.
Check out the website at hackmovies.com for a trailer and other goodies. The DVD comes with three commentaries- one cast, one technical, and a one with Strange and Montoya commenting on the action in character. Also included is a blooper reel and a behind-the-scenes featurette.