Sony // 2008 // 92 Minutes // Not Rated
Reviewed by Judge David Johnson // January 23rd, 2009
She left for college and terror followed.
The feared Boogeyman returns to scare the pants off of some boring Real World cast-offs.
Sarah Morris (Erin Cahill) is minding her own business as a psychology major in a fictional California university when her entire world falls apart thanks to the sudden appearance of a killer demon monster known as the Boogeyman. While her friends are systematically murdered, Sarah freaks out more and more, convinced that the Boogeyman is behind the killings.
Believe it or not, no one takes her crazed warnings seriously, even when she emphatically states that there is indeed a mystical being hacking up nubile co-eds. And when she has a vision of a dorm-wide massacre, her attempts at preventing the Boogeyman's rampage reach critical mass -- will anyone finally pay attention or is it normal for half a dozen students to vanish within 24 hours?
Boogeyman 3 hits all the right beats, but still manages to elude "memorable" status. The proven game-plan is in effect -- death, death, death, exposition, death, death, more exposition, death, shocking ending that's-not-so-shocking -- but the experience taken as a whole fails to rise above the endless crop of straight-to-DVD slashfests.
It's not horrible, but in a field as crowded as the horror genre, something unique is needed to catapult a film out of the Abyss of Forgotten Movies Featuring Attractive Young Eviscerated Adults; Boogeyman 3 doesn't have it.
This is the first problem. As a supposedly fearsome instiller of scariness and dread, the Boogeyman falls short. The make-up effects are okay, but he's just a boring character. He'll appear in a dryer or in a closet or in an air duct and as hard as director Gary Jones tries to squeeze tension and jump-scares from these appearances, but it's just not working. The Boogeyman's mythology -- if you believe in him hard enough, he'll become real and kill you -- is a snooze. Worse, we're deprived of the mandatory Final Face-off, leaving the Boogeyman and all of his imposing murdering as a footnote to mediocrity.
The Cannon Fodder
The typical nondescript college students. I think there was a musician. A pot-head that played a video game that I don't think is real. A promiscuous blonde too, I think. Our heroine fits snugly into the eager-protagonist-that-no-one-listens-to category but it's only been a day since I've watched the film and I can't even remember her name without glancing at the above synopsis. Overall, no characters worth caring about and, as such, no impact to their deaths, which leads us to...
There were some fun set-ups -- a malfunctioning exhaust fan in an air duct, a bone-crunching cramming into a small trunk, a messy vivisection -- but the execution of the gags was surprisingly tame. Lots of cutaways from the gore and when the camera did linger it was the lame CGI blood-spurting that has become all-too-prevalent in horror films these days. I did like the "dryers disgorging blood" scene. That was cool.
The audio/video treatment is solid: a nice 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen and a full 5.0 surround mix (English and French). Extras: deleted scenes and brief, well-done featurettes on the making-of, the death scenes and shooting in Bulgaria.
The movie is slick and plays by the horror rules...and that's about it.
Check under the bed for a better movie.
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Scales of Justice
* 1.85:1 Anamorphic
* Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround (English)
* Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround (French)
Running Time: 92 Minutes
Release Year: 2008
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
* Deleted Scenes