Director – Matt Jaissle (Necro Files, Revolution 666)
Starring – William Childress (15 Things You Didn’t Know About Bigfoot), Lilian Copeland, and Nate Diggity
Release Date – 2020
Rating – 2.5/5
I’ve reviewed several films from indie filmmaker Matt Jaissle. I was first introduced to Jaissle through his film The Necro Files. It was a fun feature that I really enjoyed but soon I found myself falling in love with the film’s sequel Necro Files 3000. Now this film was a fucking wild ride that I truly enjoyed. It’s not often that a movie catches me off guard like 3000 did. I recommended it to so many genre fans over the years and most agreed with me. Since then I’ve seen other films from Jaissle. I’ve enjoyed most but a couple I didn’t care for.
When I saw that SRS was releasing Jaissle’s unofficial remake to the classic Driller Killer I was very curious about it. I loved the artwork he was releasing with the film. I reached out to MVD, who is handling this release for SRS Cinemas, and they were kind enough to send over a review copy. Thanks guys!
**Spoiler Alert** The film follows a struggling screenwriter who is unable to land a job which has put a financial strain on his live in girlfriend. To make matters worse, he’s struggling to write because a horrible garage band under his apartment is distracting him. He reaches his breaking point when a potential client backs out of an agreement and his girlfriend finds out. During an argument with her about it he snaps and kills her. This sparks a murder spree to clean the city up of vagrants, thieves, and sex workers using a cordless drill he acquired during a sale. **Spoiler Alert**
I’ll admit that it’s been sometime since I saw the original Driller Killer. I’d say at least 15 years or more by this point but I do remember certain parts about it. Jaissle does take liberties with the story but the basic premise is still there. With that being said, the film had some fun death scenes but the remainder of the film was tough to sit through.
The acting in this one is not the worst I’ve seen but it’s obvious that the cast is very inexperienced. They are very comfortable in front of the camera but some of their interactions with one another does come across as very awkward. It’s not enough to ruin the scene but it does make what already feels like a drawn out scene feel even longer.
The story for this one uses the basis of the original Driller Killer but mixes it up to make it fit in a more contemporary setting. The original focused on a struggling artist who had his bills backing up where the new installment follows a screenwriter living in Detroit. I’m not too familiar with Detroit nor do I know if they have a market for filmmaking but it did feel a bit odd that a screenwriter was living in Detroit. Or maybe this was meant to be a joke considering he had no work. Regardless, it was a little odd but does follow in tow with the original. The film does have an abundance of long, drawn out scenes that do little to service the story. I found myself watching the clock more than I was watching the film during these scenes.
Finally, the death scenes are fun. They don’t have the most appealing effects and isn’t that original but they are fun. These are the types of deaths that got me into indie horror. They are bloody, fit the film very well, and overacted. Fans of indie horror know exactly what I’m talking about and can appreciate these types of kills. Overall, Detroit Driller Killer is very rough around the edges but it still has some fun moments. I would recommend it for a first time watch especially if you have some beer but don’t expect a movie that will stick with you.