Written by Kristian Hanson
Stars: Dustin Bowman, Stephanie Tupper, Russ Matoes, Travis Hanson, Desiree Holmes, Kristian Hanson, Tino Faygo, Mary Ann Hanson, Fernanda Lins Hanson
A huge shout out to writer and director Kristian Hanson for sending me an online screener of his campy slasher flick Sledge! In essence Sledge is a back to the basics, body count in the woods horror film, however it has does have some differences which add to its charm.
One of these differences include the way in which the carnage is presented. A young lonely teenager sits at home on a weekend evening watching a late night horror show which screens B movies. No prizes for guessing which movie is going to be aired for our female friend as both she and us the audience are transported into the tale of Sledge.
The core of the film then centres on a group of camping friends who have quite obviously chosen the wrong woods! It transpires that a crazed lunatic named Adam Lynch stalks these parts and sadly for these hapless teens he is one CRUEL motherfucker! This leads me onto one of the other key differences that this movie has going for it. Adam Lynch, I mean seriously...the mean spirited comments this lunatic makes while sending his victims to an early grave...they makes Panela Springsteens 'Angela Baker' seem like a sweetie!! Yes you read that correctly - our masked killer talks! It's a nice touch that I really appreciated about Sledge even if, as a die hard horror fan, I was shocked at how mean this dude was. Seriously though, what did I expect from a guy who likes to pummel his prey with a walloping great sledgehammer!?
This nicely leads me to the kills, which is always a key feature in a slasher movie right? Well this film delivers brutal bashings, smashings, stabbings and impalements without batting an eyelid. The gore effects are really well handled with zero CGI and, as with most horror films, this certainly works in its favour. Props to the special effects guys on this one - really great work.
I also really enjoyed the directing style in the film. There were some rather surreal shots which made me think of many a David Lynch film when watching this, particularly in the long car journey scene at the start.
My only real criticism is that, while the actors all did a great job, there were a few scenes where the dialogue between the friends just fell slightly flat. This isn't indicitive of the whole movie though so I'm not panning the performances of the actors as a whole.
I would love to see more from Kristian Hanson, John B Sovie II and co. With Sledge they have made a fun, sometimes funny, gruesome little homage to the slasher greats and I am positive that this will find a very happy audience on its release. If it doesn't I am sure Adam Lynch will be cracking some skulls! Head on over to the official Sledge Facebook page and find out more!