Dead and Gone (DVD)
Reviewed by Uncle Creepy
Starring Robert Herrick, Felissa Rose, Marilyn Ghigliotti, Gillian Shure, Quentin Jones
Directed by Yossi Sasson
Distributed by Lionsgate Home Entertainment
I know what you're thinking ... "Cool cover on a Lionsgate DVD? It probably sucks!" You feel that way for a good reason, too; we've all been burned by them and their enticing box art dozens of times over the last few years. Every now and then though a diamond in the rough will slip into the mix, and I'm happy to say Dead and Gone is one of them!
We're introduced to Jack (Jones) during some pretty hard times. His rich significant aging other has just slipped into a coma after what was supposed to be some form of revitalizing plastic surgery, and the bills are now piling up. To make matters worse, the family of this latest victim of vanity is trying to cut Jack out of the picture should she die. He was just a trophy dude, ya know? A boy toy! He never expected to be put in the position to have to deal with such hardships, especially now that Ms. Moneybag's cash flow is rapidly dwindling. With no other recourse, he kidnaps his older chica's body, medical equipment and all, and transplants them both into a cabin in the middle of nowhere, away from family and bill collectors. Being that he won this house in a poker game, Jack is unaware of the place's history. You see, bad things took place here. Murders to be exact. Jack's now the proud owner of a very haunted house, and under a myriad of stress, that's just not the spot to be.
Dead and Gone is a very stylized movie filled with ghoulish humor. There are shots in it that are both creative and a lot of fun. On top of that most of the cast and the physical make-up effects are rock solid. There's just one small hitch that keeps things from reaching a little higher ... some bad CGI gore shots. Everything else in this film is nothing short of spot-on. The few moments of "Wow, that's some really bad CGI" snap you completely out of what is otherwise a taut and truly dark psychological experience. Filmmakers, I cannot stress this enough -- if your budget doesn't accommodate good looking computer generated splatter (which by the way, even the best of can suck), then please stay away from it. It's just distracting and absolutely needless. Thankfully things don't stay derailed for long, and in the end what we have here is a competent little fright fest with some truly eerie and imaginative camera work.
On the supplemental side of the fence, first we get a thirty-minute making-of entitled Gone with the Dead: Making-of Dead and Gone that's riddled with the usual cast and crew interviews. Honestly? I found this to be a lot of fun. The true indie horror spirit is well represented, and no one is shy in terms of showing the finer parts of the movie's great dead make-up. From there we get five wisely excised deleted scenes that run several minutes combined, an at times funny five-minute long outtake reel, an audio commentary with director Yossi Sasson and screenwriter Harry Shannon, and the flick's trailer. Overall pretty good stuff.
If you're looking for a little horror film that can be as headsy and darkly humorous as it is gory, Dead and Gone will more than fit the bill in terms of decent Friday night entertainment. Get together with your friends, and break out the brews. Methinks that a little beer chaser can help to make the way out-of-place computer generated distractions a little easier to swallow.
3 out of 5
3 1/2 out of 5
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