It’s not often we get the chance to review a film that’s not a live gig recording or a documentary, so I jumped at the chance to sit in a dark room and watch comedy horror We Summon The Darkness.
The film opens in the mid-80s with three teenage girls on their way to a metal gig in the US backwaters, in an areas where “Satanic” murders have been taking place. They hook up with three horny (of course) males at the gig and head to an empty house for a few post-gig drinks – as you do. So far, so “Horror Film 101”. The clichés are there – the strong-willed girl, the retiring one, the cool guy, the one who seems like he might be quite nice, “we should split up”… all with a large tongue planted firmly in a referential cheek.
This review being a spoiler-free zone, there’s a twist (and a clever one), but I won’t reveal it. However, it was well done without being telegraphed and sets up the second act nicely. Knoxville is the “name” actor on the bill and does a good job playing against type when his character appears. I do actually like him outside of Jackass, and his performance here is probably the best I’ve seen purely as it’s something new for him.
We Summon The Darkness isn’t a riotous comedy, nor is it a complete gore-fest. It sits nicely in the middle, with a decent story and a talented cast. The action is handled well, coming across as nice and “eeew” rather than slapstick, and the fireside conversation about Cliff Burton will sit well with any old-school metal fan. Whoever wrote the dialogue for this and other incidental chatter in the film really knows their stuff!
While not a classic, I really enjoyed We Summon The Darkness. It’s just a little bit quirky, the story is good and it takes itself just seriously enough while still having just the right amount of humour at the right times. And of course you’ll be screaming at the characters not to do the daft things you know they shouldn’t! That’s half the fun!
We Summon The Darkness (15) is out now.