Laid to Rest (2009)
By: J.R. McNamara on October 29, 2009  | 
DVD
Anchor Bay (Australia). Region 4, NTSC. 1.78:1 (16:9 enhanced). English DD 5.1. English Subtitles. 90 minutes
The Movie
Cover Art
Credits
Director: Robert Hall
Starring: Bobbi Sue Luther, Kevin Gage, Lena Headey, Sean Whalen, Nick Principe
Screenplay: Robert Hall
Country: USA
External Links
Purchase IMDB YouTube
I had to admit that when I first saw this film being advertised in magazines, I was looking forward to it. All the images I saw suggested that writer/director and special effects maestro Robert Hall was paying tribute to some slasher pics of the eighties, and being a slasher pics of the eighties fan I was excited.

Excited by the prospect of a new Friday the 13th or Halloween type film, with an iconic bad guy hacking and slashing his way through young nubiles, I made sure that I got my greedy little hands on this DVD. Unfortunately, what I got wasn't one of the films above, but an grand attempt that failed.

Laid to Rest tells the tale of 'The Girl aka 'Princess' (Bobbi Sue Luther) who has woken up inside a coffin in a funeral home. She frees herself from the box and rings the police, but her movements are sluggish and her memory comes and goes, and so she is unaware of the fact that she doesn't successfully get a police trace on her location.

In other words: no help is coming.

She is trapped in a room, and Mr Jones (Richard Lynch), the proprietor of the funeral home, tells her that he'll help her, and is promptly dispatched by a dual blade wielding man, in a chrome skull mask and a video camera mounted on his shoulder, aptly named 'ChromeSkull' (Nick Principe).

What follows are scenes of the girl going from location to location, with various sidekicks (mainly Kevin Gage and Sean Whalen) and witnessing murders or finding a body at the end of each journey. So who is Chromeskull and what does he want with the girl, and how many souls is he willing to free from this mortal coil to get her back?

Now this review may sound like I am being wholly negative, but I am attempting not to be. The basics of the story are as sound as any slasher film, and certainly no dumber, but the pacing really leaves a lot to be desired. Attack, run, attack, run must have been the mantra of the cast and crew, as that is all that seems to happen.

Having said that though, I must admit that the gore is fantastic. A small film like this shouldn't have effects that look so good, but it does. Some of the kills, particularly two 'knife in the head' gags, are executed with a massive amount of finesse, and look brilliant. I guess when your director is an SPFX guy that should happen!!

The acting is competent and Bobbi Sue Luther is nice to look at, but the real winners are the previously mentioned gore effects and the appearance of Chromeskull. His look is as iconic as any of those form great slasher series, and great bad guys needs to look good while they kill, hack and maim. Just ask Darth Vader!!
Video
A crisp, clear transfer presented in 16:9 widescreen. Not a blemish in sight!
Audio
The audio is presented in Dolby Digital 5.1 and is as good as the picture. Every slash, slice and bone wrench cut through you like it is happening to you.
Extra Features
This disc has a nice set of extras on it.

The audio commentary is performed by director Robert Hall and lead actress Bobbi Sue Luther and is a chatty and detailed commentary with the two seemingly familiar with each other.... this is probably due to the fact they are married. It is actually a good commentary as the couple read each other nicely.

Post Mortem: The Making of Laid to Rest is a slightly above average making of, and interviews all and sundry about their involvement in the film.

Torture Porn: The SFX of Laid to Rest is an interesting look at the special effects of the film, and really shows great respect to both live and CGI effects. I enjoyed this particularly, due to an interest in SPFX, though the sound was a little uneven at time.

The Deleted Scenes featured the usual unnecessary scenes that were wisely removed from the film. I do imagine that the talking skull was a joke one, though.

Bloopers: now normally I love bloopers, and on occasion even visit that extra first, but these were fairly unfunny and dull. Maybe you had to be there!
The Verdict
This film has a well designed bad guy, some spectacular kills, some familiar genre faces and some pretty cool special effects but they are let down by an average slasher storyline, which itself is let down by really really bad pacing. Shame.
Movie Score
Disc Score
Overall Score

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