Director: Jason Lei Howden
Writer: Jason Lei Howden
Cast: Milo Cawthorne, James Blake, Kimberley Crossman, Sam Berkley, Daniel Cresswell, Delaney Tabron, Stephen Ure
Part of: /slash Filmfestival
Seen on: 18.9.2015
[Reviews by cornholio and Maynard.]
Brodie (Milo Cawthorne) loves metal music, but unfortunately feels completely out of place with his love at his new school. That is, until he meets Zakk (James Blake) in a record shop. The two of them decide to found a band, together with Dion (Sam Berkley) and Giles (Daniel Cresswell). When Zakk and Brodie stumble upon the apparently abandoned home of former metal legend Rikki Daggers (Stephen Ure), they not only find Rikki himself, but Rikki hands them sheet music to keep safe. Sheet music that is apparently written to summon demons. Soon all hell breaks loose. Literally.
Deathgasm was written by a metalhead for metalheads, a group of people I am not a part of. But that didn’t matter in the least to me: I still enjoyed the film a lot.
This is not the first film with a love for metal music that I saw, and it probably won’t be the last. So far, none of them managed to convert me to listen to metal outside of a movie, but that’s probably not their goal anyway. And even if I don’t care much for that music style, I don’t hate it and I do manage to enjoy the films that feature them without problem. That’s also the case with Deathgasm which is simply a funny film (though I do suspect that it is even funnier if you know way around the music genre).
It’s also a film that attempts to explain why people, or at least Brodie, listens to metal in the first place and it does so with a little twinkle in its eye: You can see Brodie’s inner image as he listens, where he’s standing on a mountain top, with two women at his feet, feeling like a god. Later, the girl he’s interested in, Medina (Kimberley Crossman) flashes to the same image. Disappointingly, she too has women lying at her feet, not men, which would have been more appropriate for a straight girl. (But feminist masterpiece this is generally not.)
But apart from metal, the film has a lot to offer as well. Especially the characters, while not exactly cliché free, are likeable and I wanted to see them succeed. Even Zakk. And as I said, I liked its sense of humor, even if it got a little silly sometimes.
The last third or so of the film is a little messy and could have done with some tightening and another script revisio or two. But for a debut feature, that is not bad at all. I’ll be keeping my eye on Howden to see what he comes up with next.