Eleanor James, a talented actress takes center stage in writer and director MJ Dixon’s Slasher House, marking her blazing career of twenty-six horror films, from starring in director Johannes Roberts’ Forest of the Damned  to Jason Croot’s Le Fear II: Le Sequel . However, in this demented story, many things hide themselves in plain sight only to snatch her in compromising ways and manners, all thanks to a madhouse of serial killers hungry for a fresh kill. Eleanor or Red (Felissa Harley) awakens in a cell, completely unclothed and without any memory of how she found herself there and who she actually is in life in general. She dons a red dress and ventures out into an unknown and deadly game of cat and mouse, which becomes mice with Nathan (Adam Williams), another individual equally disorientated and unsure of the intentions within the walls of their prison and perhaps their future madhouse.
As alarms sound, another serial killer finds himself released and set forth to fulfill his goal of finding his targets and begin the hunt, prowling the corridors for the victims, offering refreshing twists and yet allowing the audience to abandon their beliefs and embrace the strangeness of the script. Legendary music artist Blaze Bayley (formerly of Iron Maiden and Wolfsbane front man), gives a fascinating performance as The Demon (voice). The killers on the hunt for Red and Nathan, are Corben (Wellington Grosvenor) and then the creepy psychotic clown, Cleaver (Andrew M. Greenwood) and lastly, brutal Thorn (Alex Grimshaw). Cleaver and Thorn possess their own unique obscene gesturing with very divergent mannerisms, achieving the supreme level of weirdness to plague the victims. Cleaver marks himself as an oddball, not with his makeup but rather the tasty morsel he enjoys hunting children that, makes it strange when he hunts adults. One must not fret too much over this clown, as Bill Oberst Jr. still winds hands down for the most twisted clown in Circus of the Dead . As for the gore-hounds, their bloodlust comes from Thorn’s blades oversized, commonplace in horror films, an implied sadist of sexuality, with penetration through one’s chest splitting their back, featuring an orgasmic thrust of blood, suitable for the scene and wonderfully captured on film. Although, lack of blood occurs in a drilling scene of another person, absent the carnage and graphic sense needed for the scene.
Dixon does the best job of battling against his £5000 (or $8493) by using lime green filters and offsetting that against Red’s hair, nails and dress, a startling contrast but a very workable and highly enhances the horror elements, more that of a grimy black and white prison. He never deters him from creating a gory interesting horror film, rather taking the low-end money and striving for a promising and challenging creation. The storyline provides a dialogue filled plot that severely challenges the cast, nevertheless that aspect warrants overlooking due to the extremely low budget, but the camera work, angles and the gore fits perfectly into a late-night indulgence. The filming style excels a confident style and tone, even the script contains elements of stiffness, and uninformed retorts likely attributed to the limit sources of funding. Nevertheless, a detail formulated blend of lighting and camera work contrasting against the authenticity of the set, with realism eluding from the rusting of windows, bars, and pipes with haphazard plastering repairs on old forgotten walls, hinting to society’s uncaring attitude to such locations.
This horror film brings an uneven tempo, using psychology in hidden meanings and reference points and a mixture of thrills rather straight into one’s throat with jump scare scenes. That believability likely to fail with limited funds, hence redirect the motivation elsewhere, deliver the gore and blood, and when necessary cut-away, show the aftermath, pooled, splatter and smeared bloodstained walls and floors. Slasher House itself, lends a labyrinth of confusion and wonderment, endless right and left turns leaving the audience with a newer version of handheld shaky cam, and rather providing a motion filled ride that lends a supernatural feel while portraying shadowy delusions.
While Dixon’s film contains errors and a very stiff dialogue script, they hold no torch to the creation that graces the screen thanks to the studios Mycho Pictures and Chemical Burn Entertainment, for providing visualization for a new director showing everyone a slick sick ride.
- One Girl. Four Killers… Welcome Home.
IMDb Rating: 4.1/10
Baron’s Rating: 4.0/10
This review was originally published in August 2014 on the now defunct Rogue Cinema website.