Now streaming on Tubi!
Directed by Eros D’Antona
Written by Eros D’Antona & Carlo De Santis
Starring Kateryna Korchynska, Serena P. Palmisano, Alex D’Antona, Mirko D’Antona, Joe Pansa, Pietro Sportelli, Roberto D’Antona, Ida Perrucci, Cristina Gravina, Arianna Valentino, Valentina Acquaviva, Rebecca Apostolescu, Emily Bevilacqua, Fabio Corigliano, Giancarlo Costantini
CLOWNERY just plopped into Tubi this week and with a name like that, I couldn’t help but do a blind dive into it. While clowns don’t scare me, I am always curious as to why they scare others. I doubt you’ll find the answers with CLOWNERY, but it’s not without some merit.
Emma (Kateryna Korchynska) is not a fan of birthdays. That happens when your mother dies and your father murders two birthday clowns on your tenth birthday. Years later, Emma is an outcast at school, shy to the boys, and seeing clowns eating and terrorizing people everywhere she goes. On her 18th birthday, her father returns to be in her life and her best friend Allison (Serena P. Palmisano) decides it’s time for Emma to have a surprise party. It just so happens a maniac clown is also schlepping around town murdering folks. Happy birthday, Emma!
CLOWNERY is one of those weird films you just watch unfold to see what depraved and simply unexplainable places it might venture to. It’s definitely not high class cinema. Schlocky and sleazy are good words for it. It’s a film where not a lot makes sense in terms of plot and occurs in some kind of sleepy, surreal, dream reality where everyone isn’t quite acting right. Sure, childhood trauma equals crazy in horror movie shorthand, but I wouldn’t reference this film for your next psychology exam—that’s the extent of psychological understanding. Take Emma’s tendency to hallucinate that there are clowns stalking her around every corner. This leads to some creepy scenes, but these hallucinations are a good sign that Emma is very mentally unstable. It made me suspicious of this film pretty much all the way through.
There is definitely a cultural disconnect with CLOWNERY. This is an Italian film where all of the actors are speaking English—broken English at that. I guess it’s trying to pass Emma and her pals off as trendy American gals, but their thick accents make me wish they would have just spoken Italian all the way through as either way, I’m reading the subtitles and the acting suffers for the actresses not exactly fluid in the language they are speaking. There are quite a few twisted scenes of debauchery and a solid handful of murders in an assortment of clowny ways. For some reason, every guy is a lecherous pervert and every gal is eager to bang as well, all but Emma, that is, who is shamed for not being as slutty as the rest of them. It seems everyone relies on prostitutes and dominatrices to get off and everyone seems to have some kind of kink going on that really gives this film a raunchy feel, as if it is something you’re getting away with for watching. Surprisingly, though, there’s no nudity.
CLOWNERY isn’t a must see, but it does go into a pretty solid spiral into madness by the end of the film as the clowns and Emma meet up. Reminiscent of CARNIVAL OF SOULS, both the original and the surprisingly effective modern remake. I’m giving this one a mild recommendation for the lengths of perversion the film isn’t afraid to venture into and the confident landing this film makes on a very small budget.