Reviewed by Uncle Creepy
Starring Devon Gummersall, Derek Richardson, Tina Illman, Scott Whyte, Arielle Kebbel, Eric Mabius
Directed by Dave Payne
Distributed by Paramount Home Video
You know, when the news first broke about Reeker way back in 2005, I thought it was a joke. A horror movie potentially about an evil being who stinks? This had Sci-Fi original shit-fest written all over it. Though it’s taken nearly two full years for Reeker to officially be released onto DVD, I’m happy to say that I’ve never been more wrong as it ended up being one of the best horror films to come out all year. But before I get into that, let’s take a look at the plot.
There’s no doubt this is a very familiar tale. Five kids on their way to a party end up experiencing a bit of — shall we say — car trouble. Once realized, this renders our crew pretty much immobile. Luckily for them they happened to have stopped dead at a truck-stop oasis of sorts. The only problem is the place seems pretty much abandoned. That is, of course, except for the spirits of some horribly mutilated travelers. These disembodied folks end up being the least of their worries though.
Faster than whoever smelt it dealt it, our weary and thoroughly haunted party-goers end up being stalked by a dark other-worldly killer who stinks up the joint with the stench of death before going in for some quick and brutal dismemberment. So what is The Reeker? Quite simply put, it’s a grim reaper of sorts whose only idea of a good time is to slice and dice his way through anyone unlucky enough to cross his path.
Reeker works on several levels. It has it all from suspense to shock to gallons of grue, but the main thing that set it apart from the usual kill-the-teen pack is the great script and direction by writer/director Dave Payne and some really above average acting by the cast. Nothing about Reeker feels phoned-in, and in this day and age of bad flicks that hit us right on the chin in a fast and furious manner, this rotten bastard is more of a breath of fresh air than it is anything else.
Don’t get me wrong. Reeker also has its fair share of pitfalls that it adheres to such as a very predictable ending, but overall it was a blast from start to finish.
As far as bonus features go, we sadly get a horribly average little package. All that’s to be found here are your standard making-of featurette and a photo gallery. This feels like a bit of a missed opportunity. The inclusion of a commentary would have helped matters a little, but hey … I guess we can’t have everything.
Don’t let the somewhat silly title put you off. Reeker is worth both a look and a buy. Even better? Dave Payne is back and working on No Mans Land: Reeker 2 so hopefully there’s some more smartly written gore soaked hi-jinx in our future! Let’s hope that lightning can strike twice.
4 out of 5
2 out of 5
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