Aah, a night at home alone. The perfect excuse for a curry and a horror movie. To me, my Unwrap stack!
Without TLC to roll her eyes at an outré movie choice, I plumped for the cheesiest slasher I could dig up. What I found exceeded every expectation. Readership, I’ve seen some dodgy films in my times, but I’ve never seen anything quite like…
SILENT BLOODNIGHT (2006)
dir/scr: Stefan Peczelt & Elmar Weihsmann
starring: Vanessa Vee, Robert Cleaner, Mike Vega
Local TV journalist Sabrina Meyers has stumbled onto the case of her life. Her home, the sleepy lakeside town of Forrester, is suddenly home to a spate of murders. Her father, the police chief, has no leads. As the murders become more elaborate, it’s down to Sabrina to track down the link between the victims and a missing mentally handicapped girl before the killer strikes again…
Filmed in rural Austria with a bunch of actors for whom English is a second language, Silent Bloodnight is an exercise in enthusiasm over competence. There’s clearly little money in the budget, but the director/actor team of Peczelt and Weihsmann make up for it by throwing in tons of cheap gore and scantily-clad actors. Sabrina delivers most of her on-air reports in a tiny bikini, and there’s plenty of male nudity in a fine example of equal opportunity sleaze. The gore, meanwhile is plastic and gloopy, with the accent on evisceration by gardening implement. The murder by jar of bees, on the other hand, is just plain stoopid.
The whole film has the air of gleeful amateurism to it. The plot makes zero sense, particularly in the opening fifteen minutes which seems to bear no relation to the rest of the film. There’s a revenge angle (the missing girl was murdered years before) which is cheerfully ditched in favour of a second-half killing spree. The lack of clarity isn’t helped by the fact that the cast deliver their lines in a heavy Austrian accented English – think Arnie-level thickness. The dialogue seems to have been run through Google Translate too, and the general sense of dissociation from the English language even extends to the end credits.
Shot on murky pixelvision, with performances that veer from solid wood to wildly over-perky (Sabrina has a way of squawking “Daddee!” at her put-upon policeman pater that will set your back teeth ringing), Silent Bloodnight is a film that just doesn’t work. It’s shoddy, ad hoc, and yet somehow snagged €350 grand in EU funding – none of which is on screen. I’ve seen student films with more coherent scripts and convincing acting.
So, I shouldn’t have Unwrapped Silent Bloodnight, right?
Well, here’s the thing. Silent Bloodnight is, there’s no denying it, wildly, blitheringly incompetent. But it’s so goofy, so eager to please, that I found myself warming to the darn thing. It keeps throwing skewed moments at you. People keep taking their clothes off at the most unlikely times. Sabrina gets spanked at one point. Proper, John Wayne-style, over-the-knee spanked.
From the bizarre horror-Madlib title to the heavy accents to the hosepiping gore, Silent Bloodnight is a film that knows exactly what it is, and how it should be approached. It would be dynamite at a Frightfest all-nighter. If you like your horrors to be completely unscary and front-loaded with boobs and unconvincing blood effects, then get some beers and mates in and settle back. If you’re in the right frame of mind, you might just find yourself enjoying this one.