Wrestlemaniac (2006) Review
Written by: skfan
On a pure visceral horror level Wrestlemaniac or El Mascarado Massacre is probably one of the best straight forward slasher films to come out in the last five years. The downside to this is that first time director, writer, producer and editor Jesse Baget decided to not add any substance to his stalk and slash film.
The result is a surprisingly short 75 minutes of unquestionable fun but inevitably forgettable cinema. What Badget needs to learn is that if he wants to become a household name in the horror genre he needs to infuse his films with at least some sort of substance and depth so as to make his future projects not as forgettable or uninteresting as Wrestlemaniac.
With a running time of seventy-five minutes the idea of a story line is rushed through in a hurry which understandably might annoy some viewers. Its clear though that the lack of depth in the script was a conscious effort by the filmmakers. What there is of a story follows a group of amature porn stars and a constantly high teenager that is along for the ride because they needed his van and his sister is one of the stars of porno movie they are attempting to make.
The group gets lost traveling through Mexico (because thats were you'd want to film a porno I guess) and after a classic run in with a "crazy old local" they decide to take a short cut and come across (no pun intended) La Sangre De Dios, an old ghost town that has a legend. The legend is that years ago the most famous Mexican Wrestle of all time went crazy and started killing his opponents and was shunned to live in exile in the town of La Sangre De Dios.
It doesn't take long for the group to start shooting scenes but as night falls one of the girls goes missing. In a matter of minutes the remaining characters are in a fight for their lives against a crazed masked wrestler that kills his victims or as he sees them as his opponents by throwing them around, body slamming, choking and eventually ripping their faces off just like he would rip off his opponents mask off in the ring.
If you are one of the few people that still doesn't fully understand what a dirty Sanchez is then this might just be the film for you since it is fully explained in full detail within the first five minutes of the film. Its this type of writing that is throughout the film and there isn't really anything else.
The characters are completely one dimensional, the dialog consist of one liners and the occasional curse and once they get inside the town the isn't much plot development.
Like I said though as a first effort by Baget I don't think its that bad epically his directing. Where I think he needs to work on is in his writing. On the other hand his skill as a director and editor even, are obvious. From the opening credits you can tell this isn't you average DTV slasher, even if the script is. Everything about what is put on screen is stylized and its clear that the crew put a lot of planning and thought into the staging of the scenes. Even in the action scenes involving the killer are shot with a surprisingly steady hand which is refreshing to see from a young talent because its rare now a days with the shaky camera styles.
Like any good slasher film this of course has its share of gore and blood. It isn't anything you've never seen before but it looks good and as the film moves along the effects get more elaborate and nasty. The style of gore really reminded me of the type of stuff you'd have seen from an old F13 movie or any of the other slashers of the 80's.
Overall even with the glaring problems in the film I did enjoy it and the 75 minutes flew by. Which is the reason why I would recommend this. Slasher fans will certainly get what they want from it, just don't go in expecting something more then a mindless slasher.