Everyone should be very impressed with me for continuing this project after 100 Ghost Street: The Return of Richard Speck. Lesser beings would have given up the second this movie began.
First of all, it’s found footage. And let me make this clear: I LOVE found footage. Paranormal Activity is still one of my favorite movies, the V/H/S series is fantastic, LOVE Grave Encounters, and Netflix is secretly full of plenty of other great found footage films. Found footage can bring a subtlety and realism to a horror film, placing the viewer in the same position as the protagonist and encouraging a gritty, unscripted feel.
Or it can convince some asshole with a smartphone that he can shake it around while screaming and he’s just made a movie.
I think the premise was that a group of dumbfucks with cameras wanted to capture ghost activity at the location of Richard Speck’s 1966 massacre. Or at his house or something. It was hard to pay attention or give much of a shit after the first thirty seconds of this movie, when someone setting up a camera is levitated and murdered BY A GHOOOOOOST.
The thing that makes a great horror movie is suspense – understanding what the danger could be and wondering when it’s going to stab you in the face. (Many times, the danger is face-stabbing.) This creates fear. Fear is the goal of a horror movie. Guys. This feels obvious. But not as obvious as Richard Speck’s ghost’s THIRST FOR MURDER. After we watch some guy we don’t know or care about get lifted up and tossed around by an unseen force until he’s killed, THIS SHIT NEVER STOPS HAPPENING. The entire rest of the movie is just Richard Speck’s ghost killing people we were barely introduced to with very little downtime.
On the bright side, we don’t have to watch too much of the acting. On the downside, holy shit boring. If I recall correctly, the deaths were all snapped necks or things falling on people – nothing that can even validate the making of this film as a cheesy gorefest. And if I recall incorrectly, it’s because HOLY SHIT BORING. Watching night vision footage of shitty people dying for an hour and a half couldn’t even be saved by the genuinely fascinating and horrific story of Speck’s torture, rape, and murder of eight nursing students in the mid-sixties because they barely bring it up. They just needed a serial killer’s ghost and they’d already filmed 8213 Gacy House (which….just….ugh).
This movie gets ONE HORROR.
This is a generous number of horrors.