Directed by Carl Lindbergh
Written by Carl Lindbergh
Starring Cheryl Texiera, Matthew Albrecht, Alaina Gianci, & Matthew Stiller
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Inspired greatly by horror milestones such as DUEL and TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE, BUNNYMAN turned out to be warped fun. Though the Bunnyman’s motivation is left mysterious and reasons why he chooses to wear a full sized Easter Bunny suit while torturing and killing twenty-somethings with blunt, sharp, and motor-powered instruments isn’t really explained, BUNNYMAN remains a straight up slasher film that has done its homework and excels in the gore and splatter department. Light on story, but heavy on shock and grue, if you’re looking for a good slasher flick, BUNNYMAN hits all of the right notes.
After a 35mm opener which is as grindhousey as they come with a dame in peril, a stalker, dirt, and lots of blood, BUNNYMAN jumps right into the action with another group of kids on a road trip. By now, folks should know that if you see a semi truck on a road, for Christ’s sakes, do not, by any means, legally pass it on the left. Passing a semi on a two lane highway pisses the driver off big time! Why don’t people in movies know this by now?!? A DUEL-like scenario ensues as six kids are followed, harassed, and run off the road by a dirty loud-honking semi truck. I’d have been screaming FOUL at this point had the director not cleverly flipped perspectives occasionally in this high speed confrontation to show that the driver behind the tinted windows of the truck is wearing a dirty Easter bunny costume.
Shit gets really crazy when the car is run off the road and the driver of the car (Victim #1) gets squished when he inspects the engine under the car when Bunny-britches rams the car with the Duel-mobile. This film reminded me of an obscure film I saw as a kid called LUTHER THE GEEK, another low budgeteer which simply plopped a crazy psycho in the mix with a bunch of victims and went for broke in the gore and batshit craziness department (note to self: seek out LUTHER THE GEEK for a future column…). Though this movie goes by the numbers as far as whittling down the young and beautiful cast members to a manageable number in quick fashion, the kills are amped to a maximum creepy level with rape, torture, and dismemberment all utilized in reckless abandon. Once the victims are leveled down to a manageable two, the audience is given another TCM dinner sequence to chew on which itself is filled with scenes we’ve seen before though this time viewed through a fresh and warped lens.
As I said above, don’t expect a reinvention of the wheel with BUNNYMAN. This film is a by the numbers slasher flick, but the numbers aren’t any sane numerology you or I know. Though the similarities to genre classics like TCM and DUEL are too evident not to notice (even the final shot of the film is a direct swipe from the original TCM), I have to admit seeing a giant man in a bunny suit beat, stab, chainsaw, run over, punch, dismember, and blast folks is something that is too bizarre not to recommend. The film ends the way it begins with 35mm home movies which are equal parts beautiful and horrific. The world of the Bunnyman may be familiar, but that doesn’t mean it’s not effective. BUNNYMAN will be released later this year. Fans of all things slasher will not want to miss it.