Buried Alive (Dimension Extreme. 2007.) Reviewed by Brian Kirst
The original “Wishmaster” directed by make-up effects legend Robert Kurtzman is one of my favorite, time wasting horror film pleasures. Therefore, “Bobby K” can do little wrong in my book. “Buried Alive”, his latest directorial release, does not contain the bounty of slick pleasures that “Wishmaster” provided, but it does feature enough energetic grue filled happenings to make for a pleasantly bloody afternoon of viewing.
College ne’er do well Zane (an amusingly obnoxious Terence Jay) enlists some unknowing friends, family and half naked sorority girls in his quest to find ancestral treasure at a remote cabin in the desert. Of course, caretaker Leroy (a humorously backwoods Tobin Bell) knows what the shifty Zane is up to and plans to obtain the treasure for himself – no matter what it takes. What Zane and Leroy don’t know is that a pissed off, possessed ghost is also gunning for anyone who gets near the precious bounty. So, before you can count your soon to be chopped off fingers, heads are flying, bodies are being split in two and blood is thickly spurting everywhere.
Directorially, Kurtzman keeps things moving along with a rollicking energy. His effects are, also, nicely bloody and construed with obvious passion. It is Art Monterastelli’s script that ultimately drags things down a bit. Too much time is spent, middle ground, on Zane’s sadistic cousin Rene (flint eyed Leah Rachel) comically torturing her latest sorority recruits. Still, with only seven potential victims, one can expect some padding – and the entire younger set are all definitely easy on one’s viewing field. Ultimately, Monsterastelli does introduce a twisted subplot involving Zane and Rene’s complicated obsession for one another and provides rooting value in the character of charismatic Laura (the heart stealing, energetic Erin Lokitz). Actor Germaine DeLeon as the insecure, stuttering Phil, also, registers highly with audience compassion points.
True horror fans may also take pleasure in witnessing Kurtzman’s Alfred Hitchcock moment and in the fact that, by the fadeout, Kurtzman and Monterastelli ultimately bring things full circle. Yes, this is one terror outing where the manipulative leads get exactly what they have coming.