Movie review (horror): “S&Man” (2006)

December 7, 2010 at 2:13 am (horror, movies)

 Holy crap, I love this movie! The director also did “The Burrowers,” but this is a totally different kind of movie. I knew this guy was an original when I saw his first (very experimental) film, “Soft For Digging.” But this was an unexpected delight.

It’s a horror movie inside a documentary. Most of the documentary bits are real. JT Petty, the director, interviews actual authors, psychologists, and filmmakers. He talks to the Toe Tag Pictures folks (You know, August Underground and so on), Debbie D, and Bill Zebbub.

Let’s back up a sec. If you don’t know August Underground or Bill Zebub, if you can’t identify Debbie D on sight, you probably won’t get this movie, so stop right here.

Anyway, JT starts out at a horror convention, interviewing all these real people. These are straight-up interviews with underground horror film people. But in the middle of all of this, he interviews a filmmaker named “Eric,” who makes a series of films called S&Man. (That’s “Sandman,” by the way, not “S and M Man.” Eric is quite pissy about this distinction.)

Eric is a cute, chubby, sweetfaced fanboy. And he appears to be stalking and killing women for real. The more JT focuses on him, the more unsettling things get.

Some reviewers have griped that they saw the twist coming. There IS no twist, Oh Dumbass Reviewers. You’re supposed to believe that Eric is a killer from the first time you see him. He confesses to murder about two dozen times during the film, but no one wants to believe him.

The ultimate question this film raises is voiced by the author of “Men, Women, and Chain Saws.” She comments (and I’m paraphrasing) “if you watch hyper-violent movies all the time, can you even recognize the real thing when you see it?”

Damn good question. I loved this sly, evil bit of filmmaking, and I can’t wait to see more from this director!
-4 out of 5 stars
-Not rated
-Not kid friendly. I recommend this to hardcore horror fans only.
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