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"Slayers" (2022) Movie Review

I Write These Movie Reviews Locked in the Trunk of Your Car. Thanks for the Snacks!!

That phone is probably not as effective as those crossbows.

That phone is probably not as effective as those crossbows.

Slaying Time

88 Minutes

MPAA Rating

R

Writers

Zack Imbrogno, K. Asher Levin

Director

K. Asher Levin

By comparison, the divisive Halloween Ends released last week is a model of coherence and storytelling compared to this week’s Slayers, a vampire horror comedy that forgets to add horror but (thankfully) is barely 80 minutes long. Chances are you’ll be asleep by minute 40.

It’s one of those movies you realize is not going to get any better and will probably get worse and if you weren’t going to review it you should just turn it off right now but you slog through the seemingly interminable runtime wishing you were watching that George Clooney/Julia Roberts romcom or even that (gasp) DC comic book movie with The Rock.

Might as well get this over with. One word at a time and then you or I don’t have to think about this movie ever again.

You know how in some vampire movies there are vampires that whine like little b*tches how bad it is to live forever because time stands still and it feel like you’re moving nowhere and that life no longer has any meaning? If you choose to watch Slayers, you will know how that feels like. You will wish for the sweet release of oblivion.

Or just watch something else.

Synopsis

Slayers begins with Thomas Jane and Thomas Jane’s beard playing ace vampire slayer Elliot Jones voicing-over a lot of exposition about how the world is filled with vampires and humanity is at war. Vamps were winning, but then humans fought back. After centuries of hiding vampires decided to infiltrate humanity by pretending they were one of us…or something.

Elliot also has a very long backstory on how and why he became a slayer and it will probably stop the movie in its tracks.

Elliot is prone to giant information dumps clearly in a “tell don’t show” mode. Don’t feel bad if you don’t remember anything you won’t be tested on it. You also might not be paying attention.

Elliot is one of the world’s best slayers, but he knows he can’t do it all alone. Sooner or later he’ll either get some help or die trying. Elliot is actually a pretty fun character to center a movie around. Unfortunately we spend a good portion of the movie with these D-Bags.

Which D-bags, you ask?

A very practical weapon. He's got other arrows in that beard.

A very practical weapon. He's got other arrows in that beard.

They go by the name of StreamTeam. They’re a bunch of 20-somethings or 30-somethings that pretend to be 20-somethings that do stuff on the internet and have a large follower base. Let’s meet them to pad the word count

  • Jack (Jack Donnelly): He’s an influencer and he’s really into vegetables or leather or something. He’s given an introduction but I wasn’t really paying attention. The point is Jack is going to marry…
  • Liz (Lydia Hearst): Liz is also an influencer and she’s really into fashion. Um, that’s it.
  • Flynn (Kara Hayward): She’s a world famous gamer. Maybe not world famous but famous in her own niche. She’s about to play an important match later unless something happens to interrupt that.
  • Jules (Abigail Breslin): Jules is a…I don’t remember. All I could think while watching this was, "Why is Abigail Breslin in this movie? Did the pandemic force you to take jobs like this for money?" Somebody write Zombieland 3 or Season 3 of Scream Queens.

Liz and Jack were supposed to get married today but billionaire tech magnate Steven Rektor wanted to meet with all of StreamTeam for a very important business venture. Marriage can wait.

"Why wasn't there another season of Scream Queens?"

"Why wasn't there another season of Scream Queens?"

While StreamTeam is driving out to the Rektor compound in the middle of nowhere there’s a ramshackle trailer in the middle of the road. Surely enough it’s Elliot warning StreamTeam not to go see Rektor because he’s bad news.

StreamTeam ignores Elliot because he’s old and looks like a homeless man and they’re young and relevant and will never go out of style.

StreamTeam meets with Rektor’s wife Beverly (Malin Akerman of Watchmen. Wow, she’s in this too. F*cking pandemic). Beverly proposes that Rektor business ventures merge with StreamTeam as Rektor can use their large and extremely young fan base. Rektor has something that will cure the world of all its ills and is willing to pay StreamTeam millions of dollars for access to their fans.

Jack and Liz are more than willing to hold off on getting married if it means all that money. Little do they know that Rektor chose StreamTeam for a reason, and some of them may not be leaving the compound alive.

What Works With Slayers

  • Thomas Jane is the only reason to see this. Jane looks like he’s having a blast chewing scenery. He’s having a lot more fun than the audience is and you wish whatever he’s on could transfer over to whoever’s unfortunate enough to be watching this. You’re more fascinated with Elliot’s beard more than you are anything else in the movie. Why? There’s a VHS copy of 2007’s The Mist inside it. An infinitely better Thomas Jane movie than Slayers. Heck, even Dreamcatcher will do.
"Did you actually read this script?"

"Did you actually read this script?"

What Doesn’t Work With Slayers

  • Since the title of the movie is Slayers, as you plod your way through the runtime hoping the movie has 30 minute end credits so it’ll be over soon, know that almost any episode of Buffy The Vampire Slayer is funnier, scarier, and probably has a bigger budget than anything in this movie.
  • Aside from Elliot and Kara Hayward’s Flynn, every character in the movie is an insufferable d*ck and you want the vampires to speed up and kill them so you don’t have to see them onscreen anymore. It’s rarely a good sign when it’s not even 20 minutes into the movie and you want the villains to win. Quickly.
  • Will scare only those who’ve never seen a vampire movie before. Or those who only watch Twilight. Either way, the only way your pulse will quicken is if you hit your head falling asleep while gamely trying to finish this.

Overall

Slayers is a horror/comedy that lacks bite. You’d do better to watch an entire movie centered around the bully marching band from Halloween Ends because that might actually be funny.

Really 1.5 or 1.25

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© 2022 Noel Penaflor