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'Laid to Rest' DVD Review

About.com Rating 2.5 Star Rating

By

Laid to Rest DVD
© Anchor Bay

The Bottom Line

A promising '80s-styled slasher that provides outstanding gore and little else.
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Pros

  • Great gore effects
  • Good cast
  • Impressive look for its budget

Cons

  • Distracting direction
  • Unpolished script
  • Unlikeable lead

Description

  • Starring Lena Headey, Kevin Gage, Bobbi Sue Luther, Johnathon Schaech, Richard Lynch, Sean Whalen, Thomas Dekker
  • Directed by Robert Hall
  • Rated NR
  • DVD Release Date: April 21, 2009

Guide Review - 'Laid to Rest' DVD Review

Laid to Rest is a tour de force of gore and mayhem -- a throwback to the '80s slasher heyday -- so why is it so annoying?

It certainly has its good points. For one, the story jumps into the action from the start, as our heroine, nicknamed Princess, wakes up in a funeral home with no memory. A masked killer, who calls himself ChromeSkull (it's even on the license plate of his...luxury sedan?), attacks her, but she escapes and hitchhikes to safety. She and her rescuers are then stalked through the night as they try to find help in a small, isolated town.

For a low-budget, shot-on-video movie, Laid to Rest has a great look and boasts an impressive cast, including Lena Heady and Thomas Dekker -- both of whom director Robert Hall met through his makeup work on The Sarah Connor Chronicles. Because of Hall's effects expertise, the creative gore sequences are the film's strong point.

Despite its assets, though, the film suffers from being a personal showcase for Hall and his wife, Bobbi Sue Luther, who stars and produces. The writing, direction and lead all lack polish. Plot elements feel contrived just to keep the story going: no one has phones in their houses or gas in their cars, and when they finally get a gassed-up vehicle, they make up an excuse not to vamoose. Also, there's no explanation of who ChromeSkull is, and the ending is as anticlimactic as they get.

The direction, meanwhile, is rife with quick cuts and awkward camera angles that take away from the splattery action and the attempts to scare. And Luther, as a lead actress, isn't engaging, nor is her character likable; she's cold and passive and runs off half-cocked, jeopardizing her friends.

In the end, Laid to Rest proves so frustrating because it has so much potential.

The DVD

Special features include commentary, making-of featurettes, deleted scenes and bloopers.

Movie: C
DVD: B

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