Friday, June 17, 2011

DVD Review: Corporate Cutthroat Massacre (2009)

Corporate Cutthroat Massacre (2009)

Label: MVD Visual
Region: Region 0 NTSC
Rating: Unrated
Duration: 70 mins
Video: 16x9 Widescreen
Audio: Dolby Digital Stereo
Director: Creep Creepersin
Cast: Alina Madison, Charlie Vaughn, Chandler Maness, Robyn Leigh, Tabitha Taylor, Derek Du Chesne, Sunny Doench, Stephanie Jacksonm, Dudley Beene
Tagline: It's The Office meets American Psycho

This is the third film I've reviewed from the prolific director Creep Creepersin whose previous films Creep Creepersin's Frankenstein (2009) and He (2009) weren't anything more than one and done DVD watches for me, I just don't think I would ever rewatch them to be honest. Each film had points of interest and some cool ideas but the artistry and craftsmanship weren't there to form a completely watchable film, they were rough watches that screamed amateur micro-budget filmmaking. Creepersin's latest film is a psychological thriller/slasher. As I understand it the origins of Corporate Cutthroat Massacre stem from actor/writer Elina Madison, the nightmarish killer snatch in Chad Ferrin's Someone's Knocking at the Door (2009), coming to Creep needing help editing her short film Late Shift. The two came together and fleshed out the story a bit and CCM was born from that short film, which is a special feature on this DVD.

The film revolves around a group of late-night office workers and their office manager Brandi (Elina Madison) who is quite the cold-hearted bitch, real uptight. This night she's even more stressed than usual when corporate sends down word that sales are poor and two employees need to get the axe by the end of the day. She calls a staff meeting mere minutes before the end of the shift and tells them that one, everyone is required to work late to assemble their sales figures, and two, that those with the lowest sales figures are gonna get the axe. Of course everyone is quite pissed about this and as the night wears on co-workers start falling victim to a killer who stalks the office corridors. Is there a nut on the loose, is one of the co-workers trying to up the odds in their favor by removing the competition?

Well, it's not a very original idea and not perfectly executed either but the cast are a fun bunch. There's the bitchy boss Brandi, the kiss-ass assistant Shelton (Dudley Beene), the lush Beth (Sunny Doenche), the man-whore Bryan (Chandler Maness), the office slut Kim (Robbyn Leigh), the dork Bernie (Charlie Vaughn), a young engaged couple John (Derek Du Chesne) and Pennie (Stephanie Jackson), plus the creepy new maintenance man Rusty (Frankie Ray), a recent parolee. This is by far the most talented cast of actors Creepersin's worked with that I've seen, solid performances all around, very charming and engaging people. Great chemistry between everyone, a good group dynamic that was quite entertaining. After seeing He I must say it's a  relief that Creepersin sat this one out and stayed behind the camera.
Be forewarned that this is more a psychological-horror-comedy than an bloody slasher, there's precious little on-screen blood or gore, the violence is more implied than shown, which was a disappointment, some bloody kills would have kicked this up a notch for me. Also, I didn't care for the fact that no one seems to realize that coworkers are getting knocked off till the final 10 minutes of the film, just characters getting killed off and no one seems to notice anything, kinda lame - no stalk n' slash thrills. The film's psychological twist is mighty predictable and doesn't hold up to scrutiny, either. The office comedy is the strong suite here, the horror, psychological and otherwise, not so much.

DVD: The film is presented in the anamorphic 1.78:1 widescreen with Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo audio. The films looks good, the best any Creepersin film I've seen thus far, but still definitely a micro-budgeted feature. The stereo audio handles the dialogue and goofy filmscore well. Special features include a couple of featurettes consisting of interviews with cast and crew. The Nightmare Job featurette features the cast and crew discussing their own nightmarish jobs ranging from shoveling horse shit, expressing anal glands at a pet grooming facility, various retail jobs including Blockbuster and a Mexican restaurant and Creepersin talks about a shady medical plan scam he worked for before it was exposed by Fox 11 news. There's also a director's commentary and Elina Madison's original 15 mins short film Late Shift which was the progenitor to Corporate Cutthroat Massacre.

Special; Features:
- Hostel Takeover Featurette (9:54) 16x9
- Nightmare Job Featurette (7:21) 16x9
- Late Shift Original Short (15:48) 16x9
- Director's Commentary

Verdict: Neither a wholly original or exceptionally well done film, but I'm pleased to say that Creepersin has grown as a director, there's some good production value, decent writing and it's a film that I would possibly watch again, that's saying something. A decently fun psych-slasher with some entertaining comedy layered throughout with a fun cast but it's too light on the horror. Not a high recommend but you shouldn't run screaming from it either. 2.5 outta 5

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