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Thursday, February 11, 2021

Review: Skin Collector

Director: Julian Richards

Screenplay: Brian Harper and Robert D. Weinbach

Year: 2021

“Skin Collector” roamed movie festivals in 2012 under the name “Shiver” and managed to scratch a few nominations and awards. After that, complete silence. It isn’t until a little while ago that the distributor Danse Macabre got the distribution rights and decided to release it under a new name. It is surprising that this movie spent almost nine years in ostracism because even when it has some inefficiencies, it is not a bad movie.

A serial killer that has a certain taste for young woman, terrorizes the city of Portland in the United States. Wendy, a young secretary, becomes the first victim to escape from the claws of the killer alive. Impressed by her feat, the killer becomes obsessed with Wendy, who is now stalked by him.

“Skin Collector” follows the canons expected from a crime drama that involves a serial killer. On one hand, we have the point of view of the killer as he commits the horrible acts, and on the other, we have the police team that investigates the aftermath of the attacks. In a third place, we find Wendy, the victim that manages to survive but can’t escape the presence of the crafty killer. 

After watching the first scenes of the aftermath of the killer’s attacks, it is surprising how brutally graphic and bloody it is. The special effects are excellent for most cases and they provide a dash of realism to the gore scene that doesn’t fit the TV movie feel it gives on the first sequences. 

The other great achievement of the director Julian Richards (“Darklands”) is with his cast and the direction he provides them with. The script from Brian Harper, based on the novel by Robert D. Weinbach, provides a few instances in which the characters make questionable choices or that doesn’t make much sense considering the circumstances in which they are at and what would be the expected reaction, but this doesn’t limit the performances of Danielle Harris (“Halloween II”) asWendy and John Jarratt (“Wolf Creek”) as the killer. The dynamic between both characters and their acting is enough so that we can turn a blind eye to the questionable moments and become interested in them.

After spending a few years in the dark, “Skin Collector” reaches the screens of crime dramas and horror movie fans. The movie is nothing more than a crime drama, but it stands apart from the rest by how crude its imagery is and the great work with the gore thanks to the practical effects. The acting of the protagonists saves it from its script, which poses as its biggest foe after offering too many parts and decisions of pure incoherence.

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