Thankskilling (2009)

ThankskillingDirector: Jordan Downey

Avg. Rotten Tomato Score: N/A (38% for users)

Genre: B-Movie, Monster

Source: Netflix Instant Stream

Wow.  Wow.  Wow.  What a movie to make my triumphant return with.  They say you can’t judge a book by its cover and boy, after watching this film, I totally agree with that old saying.  Just by looking at this image here to the left, you assume that this is going to be a complete waste of time.  Don’t get me wrong, this film is not great, but it has enough going for it that will keep you entertained for the extremely low 66 minute running time.

The set up to the film runs just like any other crappy slasher from the 1980s: a group of college kids (a slutty girl, an asshole jock, a nerd, a dumb fat guy, and an innocent girl) travel through the woods to get home just in time for Thanksgiving dinner.  They get a flat tire, get stranded in the woods, and encounter a killer turkey who is summoned every 505 years to enact revenge on white people for sullying the land of the Native Americans.

The premise and the video cover are suspect enough to indicate that this film is bad.  Trust me, it is.  However, there is a certain amount of charm to this film that conjures up thoughts of Troll 2, a movie that’s so bad it’s good, but not really; plus, there are some elements that save this movie from being a complete bomb.

The element that stood out to me that was consistently funny were the visual gags.  About halfway through the film, Turkie kills the Sheriff, who is the innocent girl’s father, cuts off his face, and wears it around the house.  When the innocent girl arrives, she thinks that Turkie is her father.  Not only that, but everyone else in the crew of morons think that as well, and they call him “sir.”  Now that sounds stupid, but here’s what it looks like in the film:

Turkey as Sheriff





And it works!!!!!  Even though it’s stupid and you really have to suspend all notion of disbelief, for this film, it really works well with the goofy tone that plays throughout the film.  Turkie is the true star of the film.  He’s dishing out solid one liners that makes Freddy look like a Nickelodeon cartoon character.  Here’s some examples:

  • “Nice tits bitch!” said after he kills a topless Pilgrim within the first two minutes of the film.
  • “Pink pumpkin pie” said as he’s viewing the slutty girl having sex.
  • “You just got stuffed!” said after he rapes the slutty girl and cums inside of her.
  • “Gobble gobble motherfucker!” said after he burst through the stomach of the dumb fat guy.

Another positive thing I really liked in the film was the use of practical effects in the death sequences.  From the dumb fat guy getting his stomach blown open to the death of the nerd by Turkie pecking away at his heart, the scenes are gruesome and gory.  They don’t look amazing but the cheap effects really give the film its low budget charm.

Unfortunately, everything else abut this film was completely terrible.  The acting in this movie from the humans is a joke.  Where did the director find these guys, off the street?  The actors have no rapport with one another when they are on screen and the dialogue and delivery seems so forced.  Not only that, but the characters themselves are so terribly written, they have no depth or redeeming qualities that make you care about them in any way.  The nerdy guy is just this big dork who stays the same throughout the movie.  Same with the slutty girl, she stays slutty for the small part she’s in.  Same goes for the jock, the funny fat guy, and the final girl.  Not only are these characters unlikeable, but you’re actually going to root for all of them to die at the hands of Turkie, the true star of the film.

As far as visuals go, director Jordan Downey needs to go back to film school to learn camera movement.  The camera movement in this movie is so jarring, with the camera constantly moving up and down or back and forth, that it almost seems like they shot this with the found footage technique of never keeping the camera still.  Also, the editing of this film is really strange because there are a couple jump cuts and questionable coverage shots that really throw you off and leave your head spinning.  I understand it’s a low budget film but you should try to at least do something basic like USE A TRIPOD TO KEEP THE CAMERA STILL!!!!!!!

There are other problems with this film but I won’t keep you here all day.  The ones I mentioned are the most obvious ones that bothered me.  Watch Thankskilling for yourself and you’ll see the plethora of problems associated with this film, like logic, character development, pacing, etc.  This film had a few bright spots but overall, it just didn’t work.  The problems far outweigh the good.  So what say you guys?  Is Thankskilling a horrendous movie or will this be something we view as a hidden gem of awfulness years from now, a la Troll 2?



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