High School is Hell! Metal-thrashing Brodie is an outcast in a sea of jocks and cheerleaders until he meets a kindred spirit in fellow metalhead Zakk. After starting their own band, Brodie and Zakk s resentment of the suburban wasteland leads them to a mysterious piece of sheet music said to grant Ultimate Power to whoever plays it. But the music also summons an ancient evil entity known as Aeloth The Blind One, who threatens to tear apart existence itself. Their classmates and family become inhabited by demonic forces, tearing out their own eyes and turning into psychotic murderers... and this is only the beginning! It s up to Brodie, Zakk and their group of friends to stop a force of pure evil from devouring all of mankind.
In the Heavy Metal Horror film, DEATHGASM, Brodie is a Metalhead teen who is sent to live with his Uncle Albert's family in the town of Greypoint, after his mom becomes drug addicted and out of control. Upon arriving in Greypoint, he discovers that there isn't much to do, however, he soon falls in with a couple of outcasts named Giles and Dion. But even still, their existence is fairly lonley, as they get by by listening to Heavy Metal, and playing Role Playing game - they still are bullied however. But their boring life, takes a turn for the better. when Brodie meets a fellow Metalhead named Zakk at the town's local record shop - Alien Records. The two hit it off almost instantly as they form their friendship they like to call, "The Brotherhood of Steel". But not only that, after going through names such as; "Murder Boner", "Toothed Vagina", "Maggot Sperm" and Cannibal Unicorn", the trio form a band that they call "Deathgasm". It's starts off as a little fun amongst friend as they craft songs such as one called "Intestinal Bungy Jump". However soon things take a turn for the bizarre when they awaken an ancient demon via Heavy Metal. It all begins when Brodie and Zakk choose to raid around the seemingly abandoned house belonging to one of one of their idol's, the singer for Haxon Sword, Rikki Daggers. Daggers has long since vanished - or so they thought. To their surprise, they happen to find him there, and for some reason, Rikki is careful to keep a copy of one of his old records gaurded. Something then goes down, causing Daggers to be killed, but not before the boys are able to make off with the record. When they get home however, they are quick to realize. that the Haxon Sword record has been replaced with a record by Rick Atsley(obviously, it's a record that they dispose of very quickly!). However, also discovered are several pages of old sheet music. Broddie eventually does his research and discovers that it is some sort of Black Hymn. But despite all of the warning signs that greet him, Brodie doesn't warn the rest of the band, and soon they play the demonic piece of music. Of course when it is played on the night of a blood moon, bad things happen. To be more descriptive, the Hymn causes the town to become possessed by a blood-thirsty evil. With a zombie apocalypse now in full swing, it would appear that things could not get any worse. But they do, because the zombie rush is just a precursor to what is set to occur at the Devil's Hour, of 3am, when the ancient demon called "Aeloth"(or "The Blind One") is to ascend to Earth. Also awaiting Aeloth's arrival, happen to be a Satanic cult, who plan to harness the demon's evil for power and fortune. With all of the destruction occurring simultaneously it's up to "Deathgasm to band together, along with town hottie(and Brodie's crush), Medina, to kick some serious unholy ass!
DEATHGASM, a film written and directed by Jason Lei Howden is one that seemed to immediately pick up steam upon its release. I mean, there has been a ton of hype behind this one, as many of people put it on their, "best of 2015" lists. Well, if you know me, then you know that I am one to not give into hype too easily. Honestly, I must admit that I was kind of standoffish when it came to seeing it, But, now that I have seen this film, one that almost everyone is seemingly buzzing about, I must say that with this film, it is one of those rare occasions where the abundance of hype for it is totally justified.
Truth be told, DEATHGASM is a lot of fun, as it combines Heavy Metal music with comic book stylings that create an overall experience that is completely fun. Obviously, when going in, I had no idea what I was getting into, but it did not take me long to adjust to the film's laid back and light-hearted nature. Yes, while watching the film, you are likely to spot many references to other films, as well as similarities as well, as it would seem that DEATHGASM is inspired by many of its predecessors. But that's not to say that DEATHGASM doesn't bring enough of its own flavor to the mix. Think THE EVIL DEATH, infused with Rock 'n Roll Horror films of the past(and some present), with a modern edge. As a fan of films such as TRICK OR TREAT and BLACK ROSES, I totally dug this. It takes everything that parents and other protesters of Heavy Metal believe to be "evil" about the music and makes it literal, by creating a zombie/demon/occult scenario, taking place over the course of a night of a blood moon. What's not to love about that.? Apparently, not much!
Beyond the cool Heavy Metal vibe, the characters in DEATHGASM are all fun characters with their own individual personalities and such, which make them easy to watch. And as for the gore? It's well over the top and messy, and not to mention that the effects are practical, just as they should be. Jason Lei Howden is actually a protégé of Peter Jackson's effects shop, Weta Workshop, and it is clearly apparent here, as all of the effects are really well done, and visually appealing. While some may say that some of the effects are way over the top, I do not, as I think that they go hand in hand with the general nature of the film. I mean, it is after all, a Heavy Metal movie isn't it? Lots of messy gore, and blazing, killer riffage at full tilt, I say! and on that, it surely delivers.
The acting in the film, is basically good by all, as the cast works well together within the film's comedy, and otherwise gory situations. The film stars BLOOD PUNCH's Milo Cawthore, as "Brodie", a resident Metalhead who often finds himself on the bad end of his cousin David's(Nick Hoskins-Smith) bullying. Cawthore here creates a character that is easy to like, especially when it comes to his enthusiasm for Metal and all that it entails. Likewise are Brodie's friends, "Giles"(Daniel Cresswell) and "Dion"(Sam Berkley), and especially James Blake's "Zakk", with whom Brodie forms a bond. All three actors are both likable and believable in their performances. And in addition to the film's likable pals is one femme fatale in the character of "Medina", played by Kimberly Crossman. Collectively they are a classic group of characters that end up being very memorable after the film is over. They are the types of characters that are enjoyable enough to want to revisit time and again.
As I said, Jason Lei Howden's DEATHGASM, is a film that has been met with a lot of acclaim/fandom, but it is rightful so, as it is a film that is highly enjoyable on a lot of levels. Fun characters, great special effects, and a fantastic Heavy Metal soundtrack, DEATHGASM has a lot going for it, and I really liked it.
8/10 As I said, DEATHGASM as an absolutely fantastic soundtrack, with many variants of Metal represented. From Thrash, to Death, it's seemingly all here, as it aides the story along. It's great.
IMPRESSION OF THE FILM
I really enjoyed this one, as it is a nice combination of all things Horror, comedy, gore and Heavy Metal. Aside from what it consists of, it has a really old school feel about it, that really attracted me to it, enough to enjoy it a great deal. If you are a fan of the Hard Rock Horror films of the -80s. then you are in for a real treat with DEATHGASM, as chances are, you will really enjoy it. While nothing is truly perfect. I will say this film is indeed a lot of fun. I recommend.
Special Features include :
- Commentary with Writer-Director Jason Lei Howden
- Music Video: Bulletbelt Deathgasm
This film is available on Video on Demand, and will be available on Blu-Ray/DVD on January 5, 2016