Vignette 4: The Killer Returns, or Thank God, This Finally Has a Point

Hey, nice lips. Oh, and by the by, WHAT THE HELL IS THAT THING ON YOUR FACE?

We begin with a mother who is grieving the loss of her young daughter. Her friend calls to check up on her and try to cheer her up by telling her that she ran into her husband who ran off and his new, young, attractive girlfriend. Oddly enough, this doesn't help matters too much. The next call the mother, receives, however, is decidedly different, mostly because it actually advances the plot. The caller is the Necromancer, played by a young woman by the name of Lilith Stabs. Seriously. Lilith has the whole goth chick thing going on. She also has the whole giant tick trying to eat her cheek thing going on, but I don't know if that's actually part of the character or just a serious medical problem. It seems the grieving mother once represented the Necromancer in court, and now she wants to repay the favor by bringing her daughter back to life. That seems like a fair trade to me. You get me off the hook for dinging that guy's fender, I'll rend asunder that natural laws of the universe and give life to a pile of inanimate ashes. Not a bad deal at all.

The mother brings her daughter's urn to the cemetery in a duffle bag, where the Necromancer and her face parasite pick it up. The Necromancer brings it back to her fiendish suburban layer with lovely purple trim, then enacts the Ancient Ritual of Every Magicky-Looking Symbol Steve Sessions Could Think Of. Of course, as we all know, the ashes are only partially the little girl's. The rest belong to the serial killer. Surprise surprise, what does the Necromancer reincarnate but an adult male whose basic look is a ripoff of Freddy Krueger. He's got the fedora, the burnt face, and he kills with a long, thin, talon-like blade. Reeeeeeeeeeal creative. Okay, we've introduced our killer, now it's time to have us a good old fashioned spree of some sort! Possibly involving killing!

God, that's an awful effect. Guess what's going on in this picture, win a prize!

The grieving mother is evidently feeling pretty good about the whole entrusting-her-daughter's-ashes-to-a-witch thing, as she treats herself and her two silicone friends to a nice, hot bath. As she towels herself off, she hears someone break into the house and head in her direction. She hides in the shower, and we switch to the killer's perspective. To portray the killer's burnt zombie vision, Steve Sessions uses a visual effect that's like a combination of night shot and photo negative that makes the screen completely unwatchable. It's something of a shame, because roughly half of the next twenty minutes is shot with that effect. The killer doesn't notice the mother in the shower stall and shambles out of the bathroom. As someone who willingly handed over the last mortal remains of her only child to a witch without the slightest hesitation, the mother is obviously a genius. She puts that dazzling intellect to work right now. 

Rather than hiding in the safety of the shower until the killer leaves the house, she decides to leave the bathroom all of four seconds after the killer walks out the door. Even if he had broken into a run right after leaving the bathroom, there would be no conceivable way that he could be a safe distance away in that short a time. So it's not exactly a shocker when the mother doesn't have time to complete her call to the police before she has to hide in a closet to keep from being found. The killer fails to spot her once again, but he's not about to leave that easily. No, he does what any self-respecting zombie murdered would do in his situation - he turns on a strobe light and throws a heavy metal disc into the CD player. To be honest, I'm somewhat surprised that the mother has death metal in her collection, as well as strobe lights rigged throughout her entire house. But then, she's just full of surprises. For instance, it is also surprising that she'd be stupid enough to leave the closet about five seconds later. The killer just put on music. He's not going anywhere. As soon as she steps out, he stabs her. Oh cruel irony! Stabbed by the very reanimated ashes of the serial killer who was cremated alongside her own daughter!

"Hmm... it seems my girlfriend's been turned into a mannequin head. Oh well, at least she'll shut up for once."

The killer then moves on to his next target - some guy in bed with some asian chick. Presumably the man is the mother's ex-husband and the asian girl is his new girlfriend, but there's no way to be sure. The ex-husband gets out of bed to go take a shower. While he's gone, the killer stabs the bejesus out of his girlfriend. When he returns to bed, he finds her laying there peacefully. But when he pulls back the sheets, he discovers that he's laying next to a severed head! Eeeew! The very next day, he gives the killer's godson that part in his big movie that he wanted all along. Nah, I'm just kidding. Nothing happens to the ex-husband and he's never brought up again.

Now it's our favorite Cremation Provider's time to shine! He leaves the funeral home and drives back to his house. As he pulls into the garage, the killer sneaks inside. The Cremation Provider detects an intruder and searches the garage, but sadly his search is cut short when the killer kills the crap out of him. Now, put yourself in the killer's shoes. You've just butchered the person who improperly disposed of your body. What do you do now? The answer, of course, is go to Disneyland! Unfortunately, it's nearly impossible to get to Disneyland on a zombie's salary, so the killer has to settle for the local fair instead. There, he stabs some random guy to death in the parking lot, then backs over his head with his own car. Okay the first three killings were all related to the little girl's life. The killer was just being a dick for that last one. He then moves on to one final target - the only other person featured in this vignette, the mother's friend. When the friend sees the knife-wielding killer trying to break into her house, she hides in the attic and finds a conveniently loaded gun. As soon as the killer's head pops into view, she splatters his zombie skull all over the wall.

So, through his negligence, the Cremation Provider ended up unleashing a killer zombie upon the world that would eventually take four lives. I don't think it's really fair to say it was the Cremation Provider's fault, though. I mean, in the grand scheme of things, what are the odds that the bereaved would just happen to have represented a necromancer in a court battle? Not good, that's for sure. So I personally don't hold the Cremation Provider responsible. The disembodied voices, however, feel differently. In fact, they tell him that they had decided his fate before the interrogation began, which just goes to prove that they really did just want to hear some gross stories. They end up sending him to a crematorium to be roasted for all time. It sure is nice to know the powers that decide our eternal fate are colossal jackoffs. Makes me sleep better at night, that's for sure.

I do have to thank Steve Sessions for finally including a vignette that actually makes the Cremation Provider's presence in this movie somewhat justified. That doesn't change the fact that the first three bits are all totally useless, though. Honestly, Sessions should have just elaborated on the mixed-up-ashes-result-in-killer-zombie storyline and made that the whole movie. He even could have kept his beloved interrogation crap. That would have made for a more logical movie with one solid plot. It still wouldn't have been a good movie, and I'm sure I still would have ended up reviewing it, but at least no one could say that seventy-five percent of the entire movie was utterly pointless. Oh well.

Plot:- 9
Acting:- 7
Special Effects:- 7
Directing:- 9
Music / Sound:- 8
Overall:- 40

Each category in the rating system is based out of a possible -10 score (-10 being the worst). The overall score is based out of a possible -50 score (-50 being the worst).

– Ben "Greasnin" Platt

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