Bonejangles Movie Review
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If done properly, combining or mixing a number of smaller story ideas to create one working tale can pay off. This concept only works if the components compliment each other, are necessary to the story, and can easily blend together at some point to show fluidity. Pulp Fiction (1994), for example, succeeds in this method by including common characters and overlapping their experiences and timelines. Bonejangles however, could be the result of a few plot points which were put into a hat, then were spilled onto the floor.
Bonejangles is a skull mask-wearing serial killer who has racked up 100 kills to date. Shooting, stabbing, drowning, freezing, burning, and dousing him with toxic chemicals will not stop him. Electricity however, has proven effective. Reggie Bannister (the Phantasm films) plays Bonejangles’ father, and is often only seen in flashbacks and motivational thoughts. A small group of police officers are briefed on these details at the site of his most recent killing, and they are told to split up and search the grounds. Two officers, Doug (Kelly Misek Jr.) and Randy (Jamie Scott Gordo) use more of an Abbot and Costello technique for searching, while a third officer, Lisa (Hannah Richter), is able to find and subdue the killer using a taser. They are told they have to transfer Bonejangles to the town of Argento (Dario Argento reference?) for further processing. Doug begins to feel skiddish as he was born and raised in Argento, but hasn’t been back there in ten years. He expresses more of a concern over the curse of the town than over it’s inhabitants.
Hundreds of years ago the town of Argento was cursed by a witch named Rowena (Elissa Dowling), as she was being burned at the stake. Annually, on the night of April 18th, the dead rise and wreak havoc on the town of Argento. A fourth officer, Juan (Lawrence Wayne Curry), a flamboyant male character wearing hoop earrings and displaying a fresh manicure, is assigned to tag along with the other three officers on this transfer. Meanwhile, the townsfolk, completely aware and unconcerned over the impending curse, are gathered in a chapel for a wedding. Clint (Devin Toft), is marrying Sally (Julia Cavanaugh), who happens to be Doug’s long lost love. A fairy-tale-styled reunion of Doug and Sally is imminent. As to be expected, Bonejangles breaks free from captivity and heads toward the town, taking some campers out along the way. As you can see by now, the multiple plot points are bordering on ludicrous.
It is unclear if the purpose of this film is to be a spoof of the horror film genre, as there are no clear script styles or camera techniques that might allude to the fact. Production value of the film is average, but the comedic elements feel forced and produce constant misses. At one point, Juan is led away from the group and through a forest by a trail of Twinkies, only to be seduced by two shirtless male townies. If this were a Scary Movie sequel then the comedic components of this film might naturally produce a laugh, but since all scenes with Bonejangles are graphic and gory, producing a humorous reaction is a struggle. Granted, there are worse, but there are far better horror films out there.