Director – Debbie Rochon (Filthy McNasty, Mulberry St)
Starring – Lynn Lowry (The Crazies, Shivers), Suzi Lorraine (Bikini Girls on Ice, Paranormal Captivity), and Lisa Dee (Queen City, Battledogs)
Release Date – 2016
Rating – 3/5
Tagline – “Revenge is a dish”
Big budget horror has seen it’s fair share of scream queens and horror legends over the years. Barbara Steele, Linnea Quigley, Jamie Lee Curtis, Danielle Harris, and so on has made a name for themselves in horror over the years. These ladies have dedicated themselves to the genre and has been in some of the most iconic horror films to ever cross the movie screen. However, it is often difficult for an actress to make a name for herself in the indie horror scene due to the fact that most can’t make a living working on low to no budget films.
Very few can say they have but none can say they’ve had a career like Debbie Rechon. This young woman has been in dozens of classic indie horror flicks ranging from Chris Seaver and Richard Griffin films to Troma. It’s hard to find an indie filmmaker she hasn’t worked with. Her career is legendary.
During her amazing career she has never directed a feature length film until this year when she turned out Model Hunger starring another scream queen, Lynn Lowery. The film was recently released by my friends over at Wild Eye who was kind enough to hook me up with a review copy. Thanks guys!
**Spoiler Alert**The film follows the elderly Ginny (Lowery) who was once a model but is now an older woman living in the quiet suburbs who is harboring a deadly secret. She was let go from her modeling contract due to her changing body and appetite and now harbors a grudge towards anyone that has a better body than her. She nabs them and takes them down into her basement which she has turned into a torture chamber where she mutilates she young women before turning them into dinner.**Spoiler Alert**
I didn’t know what to expect when I first heard about Model Hunger. I received several press releases on the film but skipped on watching the trailer because I knew I would be reviewing it sometime in the future. I got the vibe that it would be a slasher flick set amongst models and the like but I was wrong.
The acting in this one is good but not the best I have seen. In fact, I have seen several members of the cast in other films where they delivered better performances. Lynn Lowry is a genre icon due to her performances in Shivers and The Crazies. Sadly, I just wasn’t feeling her character. Her character pretends to be old and helpless to her victims before she butchers them but this act in front of them was rough to watch. She feels very forced and it makes it weird to watch. With that being said, she was phenomenal in the killing scenes. She brought some intensity and rage to these scenes which the rest of the film was lacking.
The next one up is Tiffany Shepis. She is another horror legend as well but her character felt like it was wrote in last minute or added after most of the story was in place. Honestly, she could have been left out and the film would have felt the same which is a shame because she is one hell of an actress. This role did not give her the chance to shine like she normally does. The remainder of the cast does a solid job as well but nothing stand out worthy. We even get a small role from Kaylee Williams who has been absent from horror reviews the last few years.
The story for this one was not what I was expecting. When I first heard the titleModel Hunger and read a brief synopsis I was under the impression it was a former model that was recently outed from the business due to age/weight that was killing those that outed her. Instead, what we got was a film more in tune with Kill, Granny Kill and Auntie Lee’s Meat Pies. It was fun but I feel that it really needed to embrace that angle and cut out the whole model bit. It feels like it is torn between stories.
Finally, the film does have some blood and gore with a little torture tossed in for good measure. The kills for the mot part are not that impressive but it is the manner in which they are shot that made them so damn enjoyable. Lowry brings the intensity in these scenes so the viewer is more focused on her and not the actual kill. The way the kills were shot takes away from the effect but the film still holds the brooding atmosphere. The effects we get are nothing special but they work for the way we get the kills.
Overall, Model Hunger is a solid in horror movie and a great effort from the queen of indie horror, Debbie Rochon. The film is flawed but well worth the watch for what it is. For a first time director it is an amazing film and I can’t wait to see what she has in store for us with her next directorial effort.