I think I discovered a new type of movie, a new subgenre. No, it’s true. Torture Corn. Movies about torturing and killing people but which are not serious in the least. Hm, no, that isn’t right. Rats. I’ll work on it. Anyway, the movie that inspired this new idea for a subgenre is Bleading Lady, another ‘throwback’ horror film that wants to capture the carefree slasher fun of the ’80s but that doesn’t bring anything new on its own. The movie plays like a black comedy with the gory as the slapstick humor. While the movie is intentionally silly at times it doesn’t help that the movie really has little to offer the viewer save for some blood spray and cheesy dialogue, something that is all too common in the direct to video realm.
Bleading Lady follows a cantankerous every man who works as a driver for a movie production company, shuttling the actors and crew back and forth between the set and the hotel. What makes this fella different is his penchant for ultra-violence when he loses his temper. The driver is also a huge horror genre fan and when his favorite scream queen appears in his van under a pseudonym, part of the new shoot but wanting to hide the fact from someone stalking her, he realizes that he may finally be able to make the film he has always wanted to helm. As the filming progresses our driver finds it harder and harder to keep his cool around a crew of underpaid and under talented brats and the only thing keeping him calm is the time he can spend with his favorite actress. When the director pushes him a little too far though it becomes clear that this is one film that won’t make its finish date, and that he may have all the actors he needs for a masterpiece of his own.
Movies like this always boggle my mind because at seventy-five minutes it is not long at all yet there is no attempt made to create any characters here. The killer, who is our main character is ridiculous and seems as if he stepped out of one of the rape and revenge thrillers from the early eighties, and is just this side of sleazy and is not menacing at all. We never really get to know any of the characters, especially not the scream queen, who is the focus of the killer’s interest. So with the focus not on the characters, and certainly not on the story you would think that the gore and kills would be at the forefront but that isn’t the case either. The kills don’t really get going until the end, after a crazy shift where we lose a reel of film and have the screen go black so the killer can tell us that he will get to killing soon enough. It is a weird shift in the film and really put me off. After one kill though the rest of them are left to the end and none of them are particularly interesting. Throw in a cheesy twist at the end and you have a film all too typical of modern direct to video horror.
There are some that will have fun with this film, will get its riff on old school horror and its fast and loose plot but I can’t be counted among those. Even on the lowest of budgets something interesting can be made and this just doesn’t bring anything more than some spraying blood and a corny plot. And again, the heck of it is that this is an interesting story, an obsessed fan on one side, an actress in the middle, and a stalker on the other side. Not a bad set up. It’s a shame that it is simply a bad movie.
4 out of 10