Type: Feature presentation
Metro Weekly Rating: (2 out of 5)
by Will O'Bryan
IT'S NOT CLEAR whether Michael Hein and Joe Sullivan, the team behind Dead Serious, had a story to tell, or just wanted to see how much special-effects blood they could pack into 77 minutes. If their motivation was the latter, they should be proud of their production. If it's the former, they need to take a trip back to the editing room.
A low budget can forgive plenty in the way of production values. It cannot, however, forgive an unsettlingly convoluted story that involves two layers of right-wing religious nuts, a vampire army, one New York gay bar, a secret agent, an accountant, countless corpses, and -- for no apparent reason -- a crossbow.
While Dead Serious does manage to create a tense mood near the beginning, it fails to maintain. Tension may not have been what Director Sullivan was going for in the first place -- he might've been shooting for a Psycho Beach Party-esque camp quality. There are plenty of cornball comments, but never any laugh-out-loud moments. It is campy enough, however, to diffuse the scares, leaving audiences with an un-frightening horror movie, or an un-funny comedy.
Again, if your film appetite runs to the bloody, you'll get your fill here, with enough machine-gunning to give Rambo envy. Another possible upside is Brian Gianci as the cigar-smoking, gay, secret agent. Sadly, Sullivan allows him to keep his shirt on throughout. Be sure to sit through the techno, script-sampled music that accompanies the end credits.
You may buy your tickets or passes in advance: Online at BoxOfficeTickets.com or by phone at (800) 494-TIXS (494-8497). Or you may visit the Lincoln Theatre (1215 U Street, NW, WDC); the DCJCC (1529 16th Street, NW, WDC); Lambda Rising (1625 Connecticut Avenue, NW, WDC); or Universal Gear (1601 17th Street, NW, WDC).
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