Director: Christopher Reynolds
Cast: Loretta Leigh Bowman, Richard A. Buswell, G. Michael Smith, Tobe Sexton
A young boy is picked on as a child and a seemingly innocent child-hood prank ends in disaster when he falls into a well, becoming scarred for life. On the fifteenth anniversary of his accident, he escapes from the local mental ward to get revenge on those involved in his accident and to woo the one girl who was ever really nice to him.
"What's all this I hear about an ear?" It is dialogue like this which makes Offerings, an otherwise blatant and unapologetic Halloween rip-off, a mildly entertaining entry into the 80's slasher genre. The film is such a blatant Halloween rip-off, from everything to the music, to plot elements, and to even how some scenes are shot and framed, it is surprising it ever got green-lit in the first place without worry of a lawsuit from John Carpenter. However, there is something appealing about the film. What exactly that appeal is is certainly hazey, but it is there, particularly for fans of slasher films from the 80's. Maybe it is how the killer leaves various body parts on the steps of his love interest. And then how the fat, dumpy sheriff shows up with lines like "So now you found a nose?" or "Let's take this pizza in and have the meat evaluated!" after getting frantic calls from our heroine about pizza tampering. It seems, our killer believes that butchering her friends and using them for pizza topping will win her heart. There is even the dedicated doctor who tries to put a stop to his patient's murder spree, but unfortunately fails in his attempt. To top it off, Offerings also offers the viewers the now abandoned, boarded up childhood home of the killer. And like Michael Myers, the killer is pretty relentless in his murder spree and pursuit, killing his teenage victims while their parents are downstairs scarfing down cake. He is a truly creepy looking fellow, and he doesn't even need a Shatner mask to accomplish it. The production values are pretty shabby and most of the time it is hard to make out what is going on. Still, whether intentional or not, there are some pretty creepy and atmospheric scenes, and if nothing else, the film reminds us of the "screw originality" attitude that many slasher films from this time period possessed.
Though some will have a really tough time getting past the Halloween similarities, there is a nostalgic charm to the film and dark tone to it that just is not seen all that often anymore. If nothing else, this film will make you think twice about having an all meat pizza delivered, especially if you haven't heard from your friends for awhile.
Fright Meter Grade:
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