Ashley Bates, David McCarthy, Kevin Shea, Kerry McGann, Troy Walcott
John Doolan, Gregory C. Parker, Christian Pindar
Synthetic Cinema Int'l./MVD Visual
Despite being given the works for its home video release on MVD Visual, Colin Theys' Banshee!!! is a standard issue low-budget indie horror flick that takes a familiar theme and does absolutely nothing with it.
Put together on a fairly modest $1,000,000 production budget by the fine folks at the upstart Synthetic Cinema International, Banshee!!! feels like a random mishmash of scenes from a host of other low-budget horror flicks jumbled together in random order without an ounce of thought going into whether or not it actually makes sense.
This can work...especially with horror flicks. With Banshee!!! it simply doesn't work, mostly owing to a no-name cast that does nothing to distinguish itself and a script from writers John Doolan, Christian Pindar and Gregory C. Parker that manages to create one of horror moviedom's most uninteresting creatures despite pretty darn cool abilities such as changing identities, the ability to force hallucinations and a host of other gimmicks that run slipshod throughout the film's nearly 90-minute runtime.
Banshee!!! evolves around a trio of situations; A group of college students are attacked by a banshee and end up holed up with an older gent who himself has encountered the banshee, a female cop investigates mysterious happenings with her handy dandy flashlight, and a lovey-dovey couple experiences post-coital banshee afterglow in the deep woods. Banshee!!! races back and forth between the scenarios with little rhyme and reason, often introducing minor sub-plots or characters that are neither seen nor heard from again once their scenes are over.
Fans of hardcore gore will find moments to enjoy here, though the T&A factor is non-existent despite the teasing presence of a couple of hottie coeds and the aforementioned sexual encounters. Even the gore, which has its moments, is often abruptly cut and those who prefer their horror to linger are likely to be disappointed. It should be noted, however, that the DVD extras will add some pleasure to the viewing with some entertaining deleted scenes and a nicely done blooper/outtake reel.
Despite a few decent "kills" done in darkly humorous ways, Banshee!!! is a surprisingly boring, predictable and safe horror flick that will neither please a wide audience nor the more selective genre connoisseur. Production values are a touch disappointing. While $1,000,000 is by no means a large budget, The Independent Critic has seen far more convincing thriller/horror flicks made on considerably lower budgets.
© Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic