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Six college friends meet up for a carefree weekend that turns deadly. A terrorist attack in a nearby town infects much of the townspeople with a deadly virus that induces rabies-like symptoms, only far more severe. Several of those infected attack the estate where the friends have been vacationing. Can they survive? Where will they hide? Is anyone left? Will we ever get our fill of these flesh eating zombie fiends?
For more about The Demented and the The Demented Blu-ray release, see the The Demented Blu-ray Review published by Martin Liebman on July 29, 2013 where this Blu-ray release scored 2.5 out of 5.
Director: Christopher Roosevelt
Writer: Christopher Roosevelt
Starring: Kayla Ewell, Richard Kohnke, Ashlee Brian, Brittney Alger, Sarah Butler, Michael Welch (I)
» See full cast & crew
The Demented Blu-ray Review
92 minutes later...
Reviewed by Martin Liebman, July 29, 2013
...and it still hasn't provided anything of substance. Gotta love modern, cheap Horror. Remove everything that was so great about Director Danny Boyle's fantastic 28 Days Later -- or even all the things that make any good movie, well, good -- and the shell of what is left over would look a lot like The Demented, a no-budget Horror film that recycles genre convention to forgettable results. That's really the movie in a nutshell. There's absolutely nothing here of value beyond a Martin Liebman-approved ending. That's at least something, but forget any semblance of quality filmmaking or storytelling, because it just ain't here. The film scrapes by with production values only slightly out of the reach of the very bottom of the Asylum-style cesspool. The acting ranges from poor to atrocious, the direction lacks vision, the script wants for tighter cohesion and purpose, and the entire thing just feels like one big, cheap, no-thought ripoff of anything from the aforementioned 28 Days Later to The Walking Dead. Even Horror aficionados will be hard-pressed to find anything of value here.
David (Richard Kohnke) presents his girlfriend Taylor (Kayla Ewell) a promise ring. Their moment is interrupted with the arrival of Brice (Ashlee Brian) and Naomi (Brittney Alger). The four travel to a country estate for a stay at friend Howard's (Michael Welch) home, a home with no cell service, limited land line capabilities, and no television. Howard is dating Sharley (Sarah Butler) who disapproves of Howard's juvenile ways. Their weekend of partying is interrupted with a phone call. Howard's father warns the friends of a pending terror attack. Ballistic missiles have been launched at the Louisiana coast, and the U.S. military is helpless to stop them. Suddenly, there's a major explosion in the distance. A bright day turns dark but everything seems well, until a strange, rapid-like dog appears. It's finally killed by a crazy-brave Brice, but when crazed, bloody people lay siege to the home, the friends are forced to hole up upstairs but soon realize they must escape the house lest they starve to death in the middle of the apocalypse.
What is it with bad Horror films and these ridiculous opening segment in which the collected teenagers celebrate their pending vacation and proceed to booze, party hard, and dance to uplifting beats before the veil is lifted, the terror strikes, and their lives become dark cesspools of death and decay? Sure it's a stark contrast but it's hardly effective anymore. "Annoying" might be the best word for it, and maybe "lazy" too. Really, can't filmmakers do something with Horror movie opens that's not this or a token kill before introducing the characters and, guess what, showing the teens partying hard before the proverbial you-know-what smacks into the fan? Of course, that's the least of The Demented's problems. This is routine DTV Horror at its worst, absent any sort of creativity that might lift the film beyond the doldrums of interchangeable, forgettable fare. Whether worthless characterization (oh, no, relationship troubles!) that adds nothing to the movie, the poor cadence, the dull horror action, the shoddy script, or the dismal acting, the movie is a mess -- a coherent mess, at least -- that's the ultimate in A-to-B-to-C thoughtless entertainment that doesn't even deliver the gory goods for the more bloodthirsty of Horror audiences.
Don't forget the rest of the usual low-budget, no-thought Horror negatives. The special effects are limited but rather poor. The digital explosion and resulting plume looks awful, and a mangy, rapid-like dog drools 1's and 0's to poor final effect. The "zombie" or "rage victim" or "demented" or whatever makeup is nothing special, either. And neither is the acting. Oh, the acting. Stilted, stiff, absent believable emotion, and bland line readings shape all of the scenes, whether the intimate "character" moments, the bickering and quarreling about relationships or what to do/where to go next once disaster strikes, or the conveyance of the terror of the moment and the situation-at-large all lack. Severely. Fortunately, the movie kills off the worst offenders first; whether that's by coincidence or a change in the script to give them the least amount of screen time is uncertain, but, hey, the movie is better -- albeit only a little bit -- for it. Speaking of the element of danger, there really isn't one. The best Horror movies make the audience feel like it's all happening, and the best end-of-times flicks put the audience in the middle of the dying world to great emotional, visual, and aural effect. Not in The Demented. No, there's next to no tension in the movie and an overturned trash can represents about the extent of the movie's efforts to visually convey the apocalypse.
The Demented Blu-ray, Video Quality
The Demented's HD video-sourced transfer looks quite nice. The 1080p, 1.78:1-framed image appears extremely vibrant in its bright scenes, showing some tremendous color balance and natural flavor on everything from exterior greens to warm estate interiors. Black levels are solid, too, with only a minimal feel of crush in the darkest scenes. Flesh tones are even and never pasty or hot. Fine detail is striking. The image is rich and abundantly clear, reveling exceptional facial and clothing lines alongside incredibly well-defined exterior and interior home accents. Brick sidewalks, pavement, grass, and other elements look fabulous. The image is squeaky-clean from start to finish with not a hint of noise, excess blocking, or other visual bugaboos. The transfer looks tremendous throughout and it's easily the highlight of this package.
The Demented Blu-ray, Audio Quality
The Demented features a quality Dolby TrueHD 5.1 lossless soundtrack. It delivers good energy at film's open, with guitar-heavy Rock notes spilling into the stage with high end clarity and plenty of aggression. More, it's spacious and makes good, balanced use of the surround channels. Bass is tight and deep here and in later musical pieces, too. The rest of the film doesn't offer a whole lot. There's plenty of talk and only short bursts of action that require significant pull from the sound system. Action elements are handled just fine, but there's not a lot in the way of natural ambience within the track. Its bread-and-butter is definitely the music, but other elements are presented well enough, too.
The Demented Blu-ray, Special Features and Extras
This Blu-ray release of The Demented contains no bonus content. A DVD copy of the film is, however, included in the case.
The Demented Blu-ray, Overall Score and Recommendation
Replace the Anchor Bay studio logo with that of The Asylum and nobody in the audience would be any bit the wiser. The Demented walks and talks like a bad Asylum/Scy Fy Horror flop. There's not a creative bone in its body, no tension, no real drama, poor characters, limited gore, and no vision beyond the cues it takes from other, better films and television programs. Even as filler the movie has no value. The ending is at least satisfactory because it's unexpected and different from traditional genre norms, but the rest of the film's isn't worth the payoff, particularly since the characters aren't worth any emotional investment. Anchor Bay's Blu-ray release of The Demented features strong video and audio. No extras are included. Rent it.
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The Demented Blu-ray, News and Updates
• Exclusive Giveaway: The Demented - July 22, 2013
Blu-ray.com and Anchor Bay Entertainment are offering three members a chance to win a copy of Christopher Roosevelt's horror thriller The Demented, which stars Kayla Ewell, Richard Kohnke and Ashlee Brian. The film arrives on Blu-ray on July 30th.
• The Demented Blu-ray - May 14, 2013
Anchor Bay Home Entertainment will release a combo pack edition of Christopher Roosevelt's horror thriller The Demented (2013), starring Kayla Ewell, Richard Kohnke, and Ashlee Brian. The release will be available for purchase on July 30th.
The Demented Blu-ray Screenshots
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