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Posted December 29, 2008 at 04:03 PM

Genre: Horror/Serial Killer
Director: Frank Zagarino
Run time: 90 minutes
Rating: R
Format: Standard DVD

The Lowdown: MTI Video’s latest direct-to-DVD thriller, “Spiker,” wants badly to make you think back to the long-ago days when unstoppable slashers ruled the multiplex.

Unfortunately, it also reminds you exactly why those movies dried up and vanished. People act in a way that is totally out of character. They don’t try to kill the bad guy, even when he’s down on the ground. And they spend inordinate amounts of time running through forests without ever really getting more than 20 yards from the house where the serial killer is waiting to continue picking them off one by one.

There’s the ending that is so abrupt that you actually shake out of your semi-somnolent state to actually say, out loud and to the TV, what the hell just happened?

There’s the scene where the serial killer, who uses railroad spikes to kill his victims, actually strides out of the ocean after being shot and drowned, to find…a guy working on a submerged railway network…who just conveniently happens to have a brand new box of railroad spikes next to him.

There are plenty of wannabe twists that really aren’t very surprising. The groundskeeper, an actor who actually uses the nickname “Shark” in his screen credits, mysteriously appears, disappears and reappears – supposedly to help the poor victims escape – then inexplicably lets them die horrific deaths. Oh, and he looks like he’s trying to channel Johnny Depp with a weird fedora and bad facial hair.

There’s the one cool scene in the film, during a séance, which if used properly, could have given this movie a decent foundation to explore. But the idea is tossed aside pretty quickly, and once the point is revisited, it is explained so quickly and poorly that it almost feels like you’re watching a spoof of those lame “I see dead people” Sixth Sense rip-offs.
And there’s the unshakable feeling that you’ve seen this movie before, only it was called “Shocker” and came out in 1989. But this isn’t that Wes Craven serial killer thriller. It doesn’t feature Mitch Pileggi in the title role. And there’s no cool premise, such as transforming evil into an electrical current.

There’s just lots of running through the woods and repeated scenes of Spiker walking down railroad tracks looking like the crazy white-haired love child of Gary Busey and Rutger Hauer.

The Stuff You Care About:
Hot chicks – Giselle Rodriguez, up and coming hottie. Linda Johnson, goth hottie.
Nudity – Yes.
Gore – Pretty laughable, but fun.
Drug use – No.
Bad Guys/Killers – Spiker will walk for days to find his victims. Days. Of walking. Down railroad tracks. Walking. Purposefully. For days. Oooh, scary.
Buy/Rent – This is a pretty laughable attempt at ’80s old-school slasher horror. Your collection won’t miss it, but if the video store is running low on top choices, it’s worth a rent.
Release Date – Dec. 16, 2008


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