Blood on the Reel Review


     A lot of people my not know this about me, but I was once in an "underground" indie horror movie.  The year was 2009 and I vividly remember the box of foam penises and the bottles of conditioner used to simulate male ejaculate.  While I won't go into detail about other aspects of the production I can only hope that the tabloids don't use that film against me when I am nominated for Best Short Film.  Blood on the Reel fondly brings back those memories corn syrup and wishing for 24 fps on a consumer camcorder.

     Johnny Daggers' documentary is about the little known indie horror genre that is still well regarded in some circles.  I would classify these kind of movies as Z-grade movies that use to thrive in grindhouses back in the 70s and 80s and attracted the special kind of individual you would expect to see in the theater.  Indie horror isn't held to the limitations of a studio picture, but like most of the stuff on Amazon Prime the good ones are few and far between.  Mr. Daggers has made a nice little movie that lets the audience hear first hand about the ups and downs of making these kind of movies.

     What the movie does is give recognition to the people behind the blood and boobs onscreen.  I love hearing stories of film making and there are a lot of insightful interviews presented even though some may get a little too painful after a while.  I'm not one to criticize someones work, but some of the interviewees go a little into the pretentious category for me.  I know that my werewolf sighting video is stupid, silly, and shot on the fly, but I'm not going to act like I am on the heels of becoming the next John Carpenter.  After seeing some of the trailers for the different films I was wondering if I just wasn't getting the joke or if some of the directors were on bath salts when the camera started recording.

     One of the few who doesn't come off sarcastic is Johnny Daggers.  Its surprising that someone who looks like they just got done headlining for Powerman 5000 is actually a decent filmmaker and very well spoken.  I didn't get the sense of pretentiousness from him talking about the obstacles he faced making movies and he was insight also.  Having also directed the film he does a nice job of putting the different interview clips together, but the intermission chick slowed down the pacing just a bit from awkward acting on her part.  I'm sure she is lovely in real life, but maybe this just wasn't the right material for her.

     Overall I didn't enjoy the movie so much that I have watched it twice.  It may have a few blemishes here and there, but its nice that this specialty genre is getting some recognition for a change.  If you are fan of horror and looking for something different this is your ticket.  I'm just thankful they left the foam penises in the trunk before filming.

6.5 out of 10 stars

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