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Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Review: Random Acts of Violence

Director: Jay Baruchel
Screenplay: Jay Baruchel
Year: 2020

After offering several international movies of diverse topics, the newest Shudder original movie goes back to the traditional side of horror. “Random Acts of Violence” is a modern take on the slasher formula that was successful in the ‘70s and ‘80s decades. 

Todd is a comic book writer that together with his wife and workmates, organizes a road trip to promote his successful comics, which have as a protagonist a serial killer names Slasher Man. During the trip, the start witnessing violent events that seem to be tied to events shown in the comic books. These events start to get closer and closer to the writer who now fears for his safety.

“Random Acts of Violence” offers itself as an homage to classic slashers, with which it shares its virtues and flaws. On the side of its virtues, the writer and director Jay Baruchel (“Goon: Last of the Enforcers”) recognizes that the most important aspect in a slasher is the villain and the violence, and offers exciting material in both aspects. Both are captured over captivating cinematography that uses the comic book topic well and provides a few sequences utilizing this style. 

On the side of its flaws, the movie suffers from adding several characters that are only there to increase the kill count. Many of these characters are not well developed, and even the protagonists suffer from being slightly underdeveloped, although their important decisions are understood. If you can overcome these small defects and handle the graphic mutilation scenes, “Random Acts of Violence” does a great job of giving life to an artist and a villain through a perverse artistic lens. 

Where Baruchel goes the extra mile is the practical effects and the creativity of the violent scenes. During a good deal of the movie, a feeling of stillness reigns when you know that something will go wrong, but there is no clue about the level of violence that awaits. The violence appears suddenly, and from that moment, its frequency and exposition continuously increase. From violent murders to mutilations and dismemberments, the level of gore of this movie is not for the weak of stomach.

“Random Acts of Violence” is a movie that, without fear of being wrong, was done by a classic slasher movie fan, Its characters can come as underdeveloped and its plot a bit lineal, but these are minor problems that it overcomes with authority with its visual creativity and the excessive gore. Its style and looks are both an homage to copycat killer movies and slasher horror movies.

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