Thursday, March 3, 2011

DVD Review: 8213 Gacy House (2010)

8213: GACY HOUSE (2010) DVD

Label: Echo Bridge Home Entertainment
Genre: Paranormal Thriller

Director: Anthony Fankhauser
Cast: Jim Lewis, Mathew Temple, Michael Gaglio, Brett Newton

Plot: Serial killer John Wayne Gacy murdered 33 young men between 1972 and 1978 in suburban Chicago. Twenty-six bodies were found in a crawl space beneath his house and three others were buried in the backyard. Following the murders, Gacy's home was demolished and another was built in its place. Now, a team of paranormal investigators is spending the night at the sight of Gacy's former home in an attempt to summon his spirit. 8213: Gacy House reveals the disturbing footage from their deadly investigation.

Film: 8213: Gacy House (2010) is a straight-to-DVD film that's a Paranormal Activity cash-in through and through and this is after The Asylum all ready plundered that film with Paranormal Activity (2009). A disclaimer at the beginning of the film informs what we are about to witness is found-footage recovered at the former site of the John Wayne Gacy, Jr. home. As the footage rolls we see a group of paranormal researchers setting up surveillance cameras and exploring the house for signs or John Wayne Gacy Jr. 's ghost. We get the usual array of cheap haunted house hokum; mysterious sounds, picture frames falling, doors shutting on their own, the usual stuff. This is all not very exciting at all but the film is not without it's smirk-inducing moments. The first such nugget of enjoyment is when one of the paranormal investigators offers up an article of her own child's clothing to Gacy if he will make an appearance - that's just wrong on so many levels. Then we have researchers calling out to Gacy in the basement, inquiring if there is where he sodomized all those boys, kinda hard not to laugh at that. Fun though that may be an exciting film it does not make. After an initially painfully slow hour long build-up things pick-up when Gacy's ghost does actually appear in full clown make-up. Shortly afterwards the shit hits the fan and we see a female member of the crew sexually assaulted, scratched and her shirt is torn open revealing her breast. I was thinking that would be the highlight of the film then we get a true coup de grace when a camera man is levitated and pantsed which one can only assume means Gacy's spirit is about to defile the man's anus most painfully.

DVD: The 8213: Gacy House comes to us in a 16x9 enhanced 1.78: aspect ratio with 2.0 stereo audio. Given the found footage nature of the film this is a decent presentation and looks suitably amateurish with a bit of a Ghost Hunters type vibe about it.

Verdict: Someone on twitter once stated that The Asylum's films are one part piggy backer and one part Roger Corman - that's a damn fair assessment in my limited experience with Asylum though it may be a bit of a disservice to Roger Corman, at least the Corman of the 70's and 80's anyway. Not a good film, and probably one of the worst found footage films I've seen but hilarious at times, a great drunken party film. 1.5 outta 5