Clown (2014)

A series of books that I enjoyed was the Zombie Fallout series. In those books, we follow a bunch of people about the hellscape zombie apocalypse much like The Walking Dead. There is an off-shoot series that is about a guy named Timothy who turns into a zombie, and we see the world from his perspective. He is a terrible human who winds up being an excellent flesh-eating madman. When he turns, he happens to be dressed as a clown for a kid's party, so he's a zombie clown who attacks and eats people. I wanted this movie to be as awesome (possibly not quite as disgusting) as those books.

The premise for this movie is that a guy finds a cursed clown outfit and has to figure out how to get it off before the creature in it takes over and he becomes a mindless killing machine. They toss in an old guy who knows all the lore about it and even has some ideas about getting it off. It's at least a somewhat acceptable premise, and they made it a clown outfit, and who doesn't believe in their hearts that clowns are inherently evil and are planning to kill everyone around them?

This movie was produced by Eli Roth, who had previously produced Hostel and Cabin Fever, so you can expect quite a bit of overly runny, bright red blood in your movie. To his credit, there isn't all that much, but he didn't direct this one. Instead, we just get the guy turning into this thing that he fears and not understanding how to stop it. Think of it as a more horror, less sci-fi version of The Fly. It also clearly had a lot less money to work with than that movie, and they do the best with what they have. As a horror film, though, like many others before it, it left me wanting for actual horror. It's not even scary.

Instead, it's a movie that tries so hard to be so many things, but it really fails to be the one thing that it needs to be - special. How can you have a clown who eats children on screen and not make it scary? How can you take us through a journey of discovering the creeping darkness inside us all and not make it introspective? How can you have an unstoppable predator that you never actually worry is going to come out and slaughter people you care about?

With my memories of Timothy (and Tim2) fresh in my mind, I had more of a chance to like this movie than pretty much anyone, but this movie just doesn't satisfy any of the desire to see a truly scary clown do truly scary things. By the end, they have gone so insane with the makeup in this transformation that we don't even bother worrying about the lost humanity or even the fact that this scary clown is going to eat someone. We're just watching a show where a lion catches a gazelle as a matter of course. Big whoop.

Acting was sketchy
Story was very weak
Dialogue was weak
Effects were okay
Direction was bad

Bottom Line: Go read Timothy if you want to be horrified by the actions of an insane clown. Don't bother with this movie.



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