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16.9.10

WRITTEN REVIEW: Scarce

By FOREST TAYLOR
One of the tough things about being a horror film reviewer is that I have to sift through a lot of terrible or just plain bland films. There are the films that are so awful you just sit there in disillusion, wondering what was going through the director’s head. Even worse than that, though are the films that are so by-the-numbers as to be completely unrecognizable. After you watch them, a general feeling of meh sweeps over you and they are forgotten almost the instant you eject them from the DVD player.

One such film is Scarce, a film so predictable it almost feels like the director is sitting there with his horror movie handbook, checking off all the scenes needed to make a successful horror movie. Don’t bother seeing it because frankly, if you’ve seen any killer hillbillies take their revenge on the city film in the last thirty-five years, then you’re seen this. The story goes from one crazy party in Colorado, to a couple of college students heading home to New Jersey for another crazy party. On the way there, they get stuck in Pennsylvania where they are eventually captured and tortured by a group of cannibalistic rednecks. I don’t know why this film was even made. It brings absolutely nothing new to the table and it comes off as a poor man’s The Hills Have Eyes coupled with a poor man’s Hostel.

However, the most interesting thing about the film (at least from my perspective) was that once they got to Pennsylvania every local they met fit every dim-witted, racist, shotgun-in-the-back-of-your-truck, bubba-redneck stereotype I could imagine. Even before they get captured by the cannibals, every Pennsylvanian they run into is a complete yokel, hostile to these city folk that are coming into their state. It got me thinking Hey wait a minute, I’m from Pennsylvania and I’m not a hillbilly! Plus, I know a lot of people who are also from Pennsylvania and none of them are hillbillies either. When the college kids come into a dinor , the very first thing they see is a giant picture of George W. Bush hanging on the wall. Wait a second,” I said to no one in particular; Didn’t Pennsylvania go Democrat in both the 2000 and 2004 elections? I suddenly found myself having to defend my entire state from this crappy movie. Now I’ll be the first to admit, we have a lot of farming country here in Pennsylvania and yes, the state has its fair share of rednecks, but we aren’t all like that. Just then a revelation came over me: I had been stereotyped, much like the denizens of the Deep South have been for decades before me. This film has completely ruined my ability to enjoy killer hillbilly films because I’ve now walked a mile in their shoes, so to speak. The next time I watch Deliverance I’m going to have to head down to Georgia, find the first good ol’ boy I can, shake his hand and tell him I’ve been there. I know the pain you’ve been going through all these years. Don’t worry Georgia, the people of Pennsylvania have been there too; some horror movie has portrayed us all as psychotic hillbillies.

SCARCE


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