Starring: Cullen Carr, Mindy Wester, Kyle Holman, Mia Frost
Directed by: Cullen Carr
Story: Sweet Home Alabama, 1986: Burton has had a bad day, and things are
about to get a hell of a lot worse. After loosing his job and finding his wife
cheating on him with his best friend, Burton begins spending his days and
nights at the local bar. His drunken exploits eventually lead him down a
dangerous road of sex, cults and murder.
A wonderful homage to the exploitation flicks that came out in the “golden age”
of VHS, this film delivers in 30 minutes more torture, pain, blood and
enjoyment than most horror movies deliver in 2 hours. Burton (Cullen Carr)
has had a really bad day, which turns into an even worse couple of months. It
all begins when he is fired from his job. Before heading home to his wife,
Burton stops off at a newly opened video store to pick up a few movies. It’s
1986, and he’s just bought a newfangled contraption called a VHS player. At
the video store the saucy video clerk (Mindy Wester) hits on him, but Burton is
just interested in getting home to his wife, Becky (Mia Frost). When he gets
home, he finds her in bed with his best friend (Nick Crawford). Burton tells
them both to fuck off before lighting fire to his home. For the next couple of
months, Burton drowns his sorrows at the local bar. He is further devastated
when Becky comes to him to tell him she is pregnant with his child.
Her tells her to leave him alone, but then changes his mind and goes out after
her. On his way out, he bumps into a tough looking biker (Kyle Holman).
Driving drunk, Burton is pulled over by a cop. In a fit of irrationality, he
smashes a beer bottle in the cop’s face before running away. He is picked up by
the video store clerk, who takes him back to her place to make a phone call.
She seduces him and drugs his drink. While having sex with her, she handcuffs
him to the bed and he promptly passes out. When he awakes, he finds himself
tied down in the middle of the woods with a large crowd, lead by the video
store clerk, watching him. The biker he bumped into at the bar is also there.
Burton sees the eviscerated Becky next to him, and his ex-best friend is on his
other side, all cut up. The group is videotaping him as the biker, called The
Poet, prepares to torture him. Burton manages to escape his bondage and
takes off through the woods.
The sadists continue videotaping his escape as he passes more and more
tortured bodies. I don’t want to give away the ending, but it is a doozy! A fast-
paced, well-delivered storyline with excellent acting from the entire cast, not to
mention enough blood and nudity to satisfy, Golden Age definitely delivers. I
loved its well-rounded storyline, especially the very end where everything comes
together. Cullen Carr, as director, writer and lead actor, did a truly terrific job
with this movie. The small details throughout the movie are included by
filmmaker/actor and horror/exploitation fan Carr for the enjoyment of other
horror aficionados. For example, the video store clerk’s bedroom is plastered
with horror movie posters, including I Spit on Your Grave, Fright Night and a
plethora of others. I was giggling with delight as I spied more and more…Also,
at the end of the movie as Burton is running through the woods, we are
treated to a tribute to Cannibal Holocaust, as we see the iconic image of a girl
shoved through a wooden pole.
It was also refreshing to see a man in peril instead of the customary “Final Girl.”
Instead of having to watch a girl with big boobs run around and scream, we get
the emotionally hurting Burton, who is a much more fleshed out character than
the standard woman-with-big-boobs-in-trouble cliché. Oh, and don’t worry,
you get to see plenty of T & A and gore throughout the rest of the movie. The
opening scene features The Poet torturing a pretty young thing. After cutting
her up, he rips out her tongue, strips her naked, places a hood on her head
and hangs her. I highly recommend this film, and it is perfectly described by
Cullen Carr himself when he calls it “a love letter to the golden age of video and
hate mail to all those who tarnished its gild.” Within its excellent and horrifying
storyline, it also asks deeper questions about the origins of exploitation/horror
films we all watch.
Online since: February 20th, 2006