Hi strangers! Bet ya thought I was dead, huh? Me too! Had a pretty serious wound infection back in April, followed by a near-shutdown of my kidneys. But just like Jason and Freddy, I keep coming back! So, let's get revved up to watch a movie called Tormented...and if I start lookin' pale, CALL 911!!! ;P
Aw gee, this DVD has, like a kajillion ads before the movie. This is some kind of karmic payback for being gone so long. Human Centipede is one of the trailers: Is that considered a slasher flick? If so, maybe I should add it to my list...Cool menu screen. The characters are all sitting at the bottom of the screen as if they're dead. Kinda funny, in a sick way. Man, I'm rambling waaaaay more than I used to! Oh, and SPOILERS!
Anyway, let's watch this sucker. Okay, so a young, attractive female is marched out of her school by cops(it's a British film, so maybe I should refer to them as "coppers"?), while reporters and a crowd of gawkers stand around. So I guess we know how it ends.
Then, very abruptly, the story flashes back to a funeral 3 weeks earlier. The same young woman is eulogizing a fellow student with the improbable name "Darren Mullet". She talks about him in pretty generic terms("Fine student...Loved by his family...Friend to all..." blah blah blah nonsense), causing another student to begin shouting at her, claiming that Darren was bullied and hated by his peers. Oh, and this angry kid looks like a Harry Potter reject.
So, the nerdy kid is dragged out of the church by a gym teacher, and he tells them all to rot in Hell. At the grave site for poor Mullet, the nerdy kid shows up again, and the cute girl nervously glances over at him. Then the opening credits roll, as graffiti messages like "Mullet Sucks!" are seen in the background. Heck, we're not even 5 minutes in, and I'm already entertained by this thing! That's a good sign.
Then the credits end(Oh, and don't watch them too closely--they spoil most of the kills in the movie!), and there's a scene in front of the school. 3 different groups of students are discussing the suicide, and someone mentions a party, being hosted by someone else named Bradley. "Heard it from a friend who heard it from a friend who..."
A goofy-looking guy named Lexy tells his friends that he's going to ask a girl named Justine to go to the party as his date. Ah, Justine was the girl giving the eulogy. And Darren Mullet's friend with the short fuse is named Jason. And there's a butterface named Sophie who tells her little group that she thinks that Justine is nice, which apparently is not what the others think. And apparently Sophie likes her smell. Uhhhhh, let's move on....
A mousy-looking girl named Helena interrupts the fun, reminding Justine that they were going to rent and watch Atonement together. Ugh. What's Atonement? That prospect is the motivation that Justine needed. She accepts the date.
Then we get transported to the party, which is in full swing. Justine arrives late, and everything comes to an abrupt halt. The deejay refers to her as the "head girl", which I'm guessing probably has a very different meaning than the image I just imagined, and implies that she's the school narc. As Justine quickly leaves the party, Lexy and his pals puts the Eminem-wannabe in his place and Lexy runs after her.
Lexy apologizes to Justine for the deejay's teasing, and asks her if she wants to head over to Helena's house to watch Atonement instead. Okay, what is up with Atonement? Is it Britain's version of the Lord of The Rings trilogy, in terms of popularity? I may have to see it just to satisfy my curiosity.
Meanwhile, Bradley and another jock(who shouts "Suck...on...my...TITTIES!) confront the kid who humiliated Justine, and kick him into the pool. He storms off, after yelling, "Fuck Darren Mullet!" Wow, what a nice kid. He climbs over a hedge to leave, just as the young couple return to the party.
Oh, and we get a brief, funny scene with Helena and her equally nerdy sidekick. They finish watching Atonement, and Helena suggests watching it again, this time with the commentary off. The expression of sheer horror on the friend's face is priceless. This movie is worth the wait, at least so far...hysterical.
At the party, Justine suggests that she and Lexy find a "quieter" room, and he's happy to oblige. Ah-bow-chicka-bow-wow! They retreat into Bradley's bedroom, which is literally covered in wall-to-wall porn. I'm serious, the walls are cvered with pictures from skin mags. The guy has more porn than Larry Flynt!
Hey, let's pause this and come *giggle* up with porn movie spoofs...The Porn Identity. Porn Yesterday. The Un-Porn. The Porning After. Children of The Porn. Porn Curtain. (Yes, I AM easily amused, why do you ask?) Last one, I promise: Porn-mented.
Lexy, whose name is actually Alex, tells Justine that this is not how he imagined their first date, and they both share a laugh. The party by now has died down, and the main group is gathered around the TV to watch Bradley play video games. Party animals!
The game is disrupted by a text message, supposedly from Darren Mullet himself. Everyone else gets a message then, and Bradley answers his phone, telling "Jason"(they assume the sender is him) that he's dead the next time they see him in school. There's no response, only heavy breathing. And he's watching the party from outside. Wrong number?
Then Alex gets a message as well: it's a smiley that gets a bullet to the forehead, with the message, "I'm going to kill you." Naturally, Alex and Justine go back to their heavy petting. Death takes a back seat to adolescent hormones.
As things start to get steamy, a psycho bursts into the bedroom. He's wearing a demented clown mask and waving a chainsaw, and the young couple freak out. The killer clown laughs like a maniac and removes the mask, revealing that it's just Bradley. The a-holes were pulling a prank on the couple. As everyone leaves the bedroom, the zombie/ghost/whatever of Darren Mullet watches them from the shadows. Then he takes a huff on an asthma inhaler.
Wait...the undead can still suffer from asthma? Are you kidding?
The deejay who was forced to leave the party early is staggering around in a graveyard, looking for Darren's grave. While he starts yelling and searching the headstones, the party group is busy toasting to Darren's memory. We then learn that Justine, who spoke at the service, didn't even remember who he was. Nice.
The drunk deejay pisses on Darren's grave, laughing and babbling the entire time. Darren takes the opportunity to sneak up on him, grabbing a sharply-pointed cross along the way. He rams it into his victim's back, forcing the pointy end to emerge through his chest. Hey, maybe Darren's a vampire slayer! Tell Buffy and Faith that they can take a day off!
At school the next day, Justine is seen wearing her "Head Girl" pin on her school uniform. This is juxtaposed with the image of Jason wearing a pin on his lapel that says "Geek". Awww, don't worry Harry, you'll beat them all in the Quidditch Tournament.
Both Justine and Jason are called to the principal's office, where Jason is ordered to apologize for his outburst at the funeral. He only complies when he's told that his parents will be called in. Oh, and the principal asks his secretary about a certain missing student, named Jeremy, aka The Deejay. His body is seen in a dumpster, as an unwitting groundskeeper covers him with grass clippings.
As Jason prepares to trudge to class, Justine stops him. She tries to make amends for not remembering who Darren was, then Jason drops a bombshell on her: Darren had been in love with her. Before he stomps away, he gives Justine Darren's suicide note. It reveals that she had teased him too, driving him to kill himself.
As Justine collides with a teacher, another confrontation takes place between Bradley and Nas, the resident punk-rocker. Bradley is mad about a website Nas created to show all of the ways Darren was bullied, and he intimidates Nas into taking it down. Remember the good ol' days, when kids just whaled on each other, and moved on?
Justine's Atonement-obsessed friends beg her to stop by that night, but she rejects them as politely as she can. Oh, and someone left a "gift" in Justine's locker--a teddy bear wearing a shirt that says "Forget Me Not". Could it be...Darren?
As they all head to class, Bradley sees a crude drawing of a penis on a blackboard. Underneath the drawing, a message claims that "Bradley is a knob-gobbler". Bradley questions the various nerds in class, but no one admits to leaving the message. Then Bradley receives a text, showing a smiley face performing oral sex.
Alex meets up with Justine at the school library, where she's been reading and re-reading the suicide letter(inside a copy of Crime and Punishment, no less... Irony?) Alex distracts her with his goofy sense of humor, and she succumbs to his charms. She shows him the bear, assuming that it was from him, but Mullet's spirit is watching the encounter...
In their next class, Justine snubs Helena to sit with the popular girls. During a discussion of "Macbeth", Justine sees Darren watching her from a window in the next building, but she still has no idea who he is/was. Y'know, I want to like her, but she's pretty shallow.
The punk rock guy, "Nas", is in a soundproof booth, listening to music. At one point he removes his headphones to pretend to stand up to Bradley, as Darren watches him from Ghost World. Maybe they could team up! Fatsky and Hutch?
At the same time, the principal is giving a tour of the school, and emphasizing a new anti-bullying campaign. Ironically, Bradley and his cronies are hoping to locate and terrorize Jason. They coerce a scrawny little runt to lure Jason out of class, while they wait outside. The elderly art teacher also warns the students that a paper-slicing "guillotine" is loose, and that it could be dangerous if misused. Hmmm, foreshadowing again? Jason gets outside, sees his tormentors, and a chase ensues.
Back to Nas. He somehow managed to get tied to the chair by his own studded bracelets, and he freaks out when he sees Darren Mullet off-screen. As he screams for help, Darren cranks his music waaaay past a safe decibel level. The tour group see him writhing in his chair, and assume that he's enjoying his music. We can see that blood is trickling out of his ears.
Bradley and his fellow goon chase Jason into the gym, where Jason hides behind a small wooden wall. The bullies quickly find him, give him a wedgie, toss him around, hit him, and tell him to stop sending them the menacing text messages. Right away, Jason insists that the messages weren't from him, and Bradley gets another text from Darren. Whoops! The coach wanders in, and tells the bullies to return to class. He then gives Jason detention, and insults him for being so weak. So much for the anti-bullying initiative. Is there anyone in this movie we can root for?
Eh, moving on...Nas is finally found, and taken away by paramedics. Before he leaves though, he screams out that Mullet is back. Then Alex gets another text from Darren, and tells Justine about the various threats he and the others have been getting since the funeral.
Jason gets to the art classroom after school, where a pervy-looking old man is telling the kooky teacher than the guillotine is missing a screw. At about the same time, Alex is trying to persuade Justine to blow off some "governor's meeting" to hang out with the popular kids, She reluctantly declines.
Before going to her meeting, Justine decides to head into the restroom. There, written in what looks like blood, is a message proclaiming that Darren will always love her. As she attempts to wipe the mirror clean, Darren appears behind her, then vanishes when she turns around. She STILL doesn't recognize him!
The next day in school, Justine is surrounded by her new best buddies. She completely ignores her former friends, who are probably still discussing Atonement. As they enter the school, they all see a message left for Bradley's girlfriend: NATASHA CUMMINGS TAKES IT UP THE ARSE.
In the cafeteria, Justine decides to sit with Jason. She asks him if the suicide note is authentic, and he gives her an earful about how difficult school can be when you're not popular. Speaking of earfuls, Bradley is making his friends laugh by using a bottle of ketchup to mock Nas and his ruptured eardrums. Man, I sincerely hope Darren Mullet rips him to shreds. Frickin' bullies, I tell ya...
Justine gets Alex alone, and shows him the suicide note. As he reads it, Bradley and the others show up, and read the note for themselves. Butterface even starts to tease Justine over Darren's confession of love. When Justine tries to get the note back, they blackmail her, then burn it. Uhhh...that's pretty ineffective blackmail, guys. Stay in school.
Darren sends more insulting messages, and they begin to suspect that the sender is Helena instead of Jason. Dumbasses. The girls decide to confront Helena, but Justine refuses to join them. Undaunted, the catty girls follow Helena into the restroom.
She tries to run, but they block her path. Then Helena swiftly scurries into one of the stalls and locks it, but that only lasts about a minute. When she emerges again, they push her around, threaten her, and smash her phone. Gosh, who will they suspect next, the art teacher?
In the swimming pool, Butterface simply tells Justine that they "talked" to Helena. Then, as Darren watches, Butterface re-enacts the day that Darren had his inhaler taken away by the bullies, and begged Justine ignored his pleas for help. She has not a single memory of him! How is that humanly possible? It would be like having a conjoined twin, and asking,"Have we met?"
In the locker room, Butterface admits that she assumed that Justine was a lesbian. Then she suggests that Justine should have sex with Alex, probably on their next date. Yeesh! Does she want to smell her afterwards too?
Anyway, Butterface realizes that she left something at the pool. She leaves the locker room, and actually sees Darren Mullet hiding. He leaps out at her, and pushes her into the pool. As she struggles to swim, Darren leaps into the pool--CANNONBALLLLLL-- still in his suit and tie(and now wearing swim goggles, lol) and sits on Butterface at the bottom of the pool until she drowns. Funny as Hell.
On Alex and Justine's date, Alex tries to convince her that his involvement in pranks is never really voluntary. Nervous at the mention of pranks, Justine decides to check the locks on the doors and windows. Alex looks like every guy in the universe who ever got cock-blocked. Awwww...
In the kitchen she sees a message spelled out in fridge magnets: JUSTINE U R HOT. Amused, she returns to Alex and he tells her that Bradley posts all of the pranks that he pulls on a website, and that there was an entire section devoted to Darren Mullet. This somehow makes Justine trust him even more, so they screw their brains out. Darren watches from the next room, looking shocked. And still dead. He angrily rips her badge off of her school uniform. Yeah! That'll show her!
After Alex leaves, Justine finds the wilted flowers Darren had, along with another message left on the fridge: JUSTINE U R A SLUT JUST LIKE THE REST. Oh, and the big rip on her jacket, where the badge used to be. At school, she asks Alex if someone else came into the house, pranking her. Alex confronts Bradley, and it turns into a full-blown fight, until Bradley's buddy, Marcus, pulls him away.
In art class, the punks make cards to give to Nas. Then Justine is teased by Natasha about losing her virginity to Alex, and Butterface is found in the pool by several students. Wow, it's a busy day at this school, isn't it?
During practice, Marcus spies Darren in a window and gets hysterical, nearly knocking the coach over in his attempt to get away. The coach angrily sends him to the showers. As he washes up, Darren silently takes his towel, then texts him.
Marcus and Darren have a confrontation, and Darren towel-whips the jock several times. His last strike gets Marcus in the eye, dislodging the eye from the socket. Marcus covers his eye with one hand, and grabs a pole with the other, beating Darren until he falls and stops moving.
Then there's a nifty sequence showing Marcus popping his eye back into place. Behind him, Darren gets up again, and Marcus runs away, wearing his underwear halfway down his ass. He nearly collides with Helena and Mousy, who think he's trying to sexually assault them. He runs outside to the school's iron gate, where Darren lifts him into the air and shoves his chin through one of the spikes at the top of the gate.
With all of the bodies quickly piling up, Bradley and the last few friends are in a panic. Natasha and Justine get into a catfight, and Justine ends up in a swimming pool. She leaves with Alex, and Bradley decides to dig up Darren's grave.
Justine forces Alex to show her the website, and sees that he's narrating every video. She sees that she treated Mullet horribly, and feels awful about herself. She asks Alex to leave her alone. Forever!
Bradley and Natasha find the grave, and Bradley starts digging it up. He makes very little progress, and Natasha lures him back to the car, where he cries over the loss of his best friend. Natasha calms him down by seducing him. Hey, what could possibly happen to them while they screw in a car, in a graveyard, in the middle of the night?
Oh right, slasher flick. Darren shows up and drags Bradley out of the car, and gives him an instant sex-change. Natasha, in the meantime, has hurriedly put her clothes back on, then hidden in Darren's open grave. She tries to talk him out of killing her, by saying that she secretly had feelings for him, but was too shy to tell him. He reacts by decapitating her with Bradley's shovel. Her head lands in the grass next to Justine's "Head Girl" badge.
The cops find the badge(and the condom,( filled with Bradley's "Little Brad"...), while Justine seeks out Darren's friend Jason for more answers. Oh, and there's a creepy little scene showing students hurrying to get to class, unaware that the spirit of Darren Mullet is standing in the middle of the corridor.
Jason admits that he was the one who told Bradley that Darren loved Justine, just to get the bullies to focus their torture on Darren instead of him. See? Even he wasn't a nice guy! Told you so...I'll bet even Helena and Mousy turn out to be drug dealers or something just as bad, like lawyers. Anyway, Justine leaves the art class to go tell the authorities everything she now knows. As soon as she exits, Jason realizes that Darren is behind him. Well, so much for any of his future plans!
Justine meets Helena on the way, and apologizes for snubbing her. Oh, and her sidekick is "Emily"...damn, I liked the name Mousy. Khalilah brushes past them, claiming that Natasha is texting that she's in trouble in the art class, and she runs off to get killed soon. Then Helena and Emily abandon Justine, showing her what it feels like.
Back to the art classroom. Jason has 2 pencils shoved up his nostrils, and he begs Darren not to kill him. Darren pushes his head against the table, killing him slowly. Awww...have a heart, dude! He was bullied too! Not too many folks left, are there? Oh, and Justine's badge teleports to the art class. Magic!
The cops arrive to question Justine, and Khalilah gets to the art room. Darren suffocates her in a plastic sheet until she passes out, then the scene switches to Justine again, who finds Alex hiding from the killer. Man, I wish the movie was "going back to Khali, to Khali, to Khali..." (Sorry LL Cool J. Couldn't resist making that joke!)
Anyway, Alex is in hysterics. He has a screwdriver as a weapon, and he tells Justine that Bradley and Natasha were found mutilated. When she informs him that Khali supposedly had a text from Natasha, Alex decides to head to the art room as well. Justine follows close on his heels.
Khali's still alive! Darren tied her wrists down to the guillotine, so I think we can guess where this is heading...Yup! A cell phone in front of her shows a video of her slapping Darren around, as several students egg them on. She gets her hands chopped off, and tries to dial the phone with her nose. Freakin' riot.
Justine and Alex find her, then Darren finds them. They try to get somebody's attention at the window, but the only person there is Nas, reading a book called Signing For Dummies. That was a nice touch, but why does he get to live, while Jason deserves death?
Alex stabs Darren with the screwdriver, and he and Justine run away. They get to a lounge area, and bar the door, then hide. Alex tearfully confesses that he really does love Justine, and they kiss. Awww, see? I knew the guy had a conscience somewhere in there!
Then they spot Darren, who was watching. Alex rushes forward to protect Justine, but Darren knocks him to the ground and pins his hand to the floor with the screwdriver. Ow. Then he starts to strangle Justine, but has to pause to use his inhaler. Let's rewind this, and take a drink every time we see the inhaler or a reference to the movie Atonement.
Justine manages to grab the inhaler and throw it across the room, and Alex somehow pries the screwdriver out of his hand. He steps on the inhaler, and punches Darren across the room...where he lands next to both the inhaler AND the screwdriver. What were the odds? Wait...were there 2 inhalers? If not, then they needed to rethink this scene...
Alex begs Justine to save herself, and Darren begins to choke him. He then slams Alex into the floor, and raises the screwdriver for the killing blow, but Justine steps in. She begs Darren to spare Alex, because it was her fault that he killed himself. Darren looks up at her, then stabs Alex in the neck.
Justine pulls the screwdriver out then tries to stop the gusher of blood, but it's too late. She screams at Darren that he does look like Shrek, then the cops break down the door and find her. Darren is finally gone. Justine is arrested in front of the entire school, and they all just stare at her in shocked silence. Then Justine looks back at the building, and Darren is watching through one of the windows. Justine goes bonkers.
The credits start to roll, but there's one more scene to go: The coach is tormenting the team, and sends them out to run laps. He finds Darren at the back of the room, sitting down on the floor, and starts to yell at him as well. Then Darren hands him a note, excusing him from running laps because he's dead. Darren stands up, and the coach realizes that he's screwed. THE END
Man, this one was worth the wait! Great comedy-horror, and a lot of variety as well. Only half a point off for having no one to root for. Still, a 4.5 killer trees out of 5 is still a terrific movie. Maybe I should almost die more often...
And what did I learn?
-Asthma will haunt you even after you die.
-Porn makes interesting wallpaper.
- Atonement. Atonement. Atonement. That is all.
-Bonus one: You can tell what a person's disposition is just by sniffing them.
It really is nice to be back. If my silly crap makes even 1 person laugh, then it's worth it. I better go before I get sappy. Take care, guys...see you next week! Oh, and the next movie is either Home Sick or the most recent Texas Chainsaw film. I had to move Smiley back a bit, but I'll see it someday.