An elite British boarding school turns into a battleground for survival
when seismic tremors unleash unspeakable horrors from the ground.
Slaughterhouse Rulez (2018)
Directed by Crispian Mills
Written by Crispian Mills and Henry Fitzherbert
Starring Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Michael Sheen, Asa Butterfield, Finn Cole, Hermione Corfield, Margot Robbie
The time has come where the horror comedy team of Pegg and Frost (as close as we've come to a modern day Abbott and Costello) are now producing films. Stolen Picture is their production company and this marks their maiden voyage. With Shaun of the Dead, these two earned their place in horror history and they continued to show themselves to be students of cinema along with their director, and friend, Edgar Wright. Their films have been marked by excellent humor, gore that never feels excessive, and an intelligent construction showing off their knowledge of genre films but not bragging, more of a wink.
Slaughterhouse Rulez feels like it could have been written by Simon Pegg and Edgar Wright as the previously mentioned trademarks are there. I enjoyed this flick as it has some great moments of horror but it takes too long getting there. We're introduced to Don Wallace (Cole) whose mother is taking him to the titular boarding school, Slaughterhouse, as it represents his chance to have a good life. Don is the new kid and it is through him that we experience the hierarchy of the school and its houses. There's a jock house, a loser house, and an all-girl house that's occupied by Clemsie (Corfield), Don's crush. The subplot of a fracking company opening a sinkhole really doesn't serve much of a purpose other than to unleash the monsters, so it feels forced. There's one reason I am thankful for it: Nick Frost. His character is hilarious as you'd expect and a nice bridge between the fracking company and Slaughterhouse.
For me, this flick shines once the monsters show up and this should have been where the filmmakers spent their time. The horror and comedy really fire during the latter part of the movie. Technical gripes aside, this is a fun film that didn't do so well in theaters (a return of $970,000 on a budget of $6.8 million; numbers are adjusted from British currency) but I feel will find a following on streaming and disc. I cannot wait for Truth Seekers to come to Amazon Prime because I cannot get enough of Simon Pegg and Nick Frost. I think this is only the beginning of good things for these two as executive producers and creators.