Friday, September 7, 2012

Gutterballs (2008)

When I was a kid, my parents went bowling a lot, like every Friday night and would take me with them. I was too little to bowl, so I would simply play in the arcade with the other kids until my parents were done with their games.  I soon became interested in playing myself when I was older and still want to play again. It's a pretty fun place to just hang out with friends, play some games, have sex in the bathroom, and just have a good time. Playing after hours would sound pretty sweet huh? Nobody to bother you and you could just play as many games as you want. Hell, you could even have some sexual fun on the pool table. Well, if you try this at the bowling alley in the indie sexploitation/slasher flick Gutterballs then losing the game is the least of your worries.

     Gutterballs starts out with two rival bowling teams. There's the group of rockers and stoners lead by Jamie and then there's the group of asshole jocks lead by the hotheaded prick Steve.  Steve and Jamie get into a major fist fight that ends with Jamie's girlfriend Lisa throwing a bowling ball on Steve's foot.  The Janitor kicks them all out and tells them that they can come back the next night after closing for a game. Lisa realizes that she forgot her purse inside the bowling alley and goes back inside to get it only to be gang raped by Steve and his pack of assholes.  The next night, everybody comes back for the game including two hookers that arrived with Steve. Everything seems to be going fine at first until a mysterious player by the name BBK begins beating everybody's scores and the players of both teams are suddenly disappearing. Those left find themselves up against a bowling bag masked killer. Is it Lisa wanting to get revenge on Steve and his friends? Is it the  Janitor? Or is it somebody else?

         Gutterballs is a tribute to the old seventies and eighties horror films. It's part sexploitation, part gorefest, and definitely slasher territory.  The story of a masked killer murdering people in a bowling alley has been something that I've been wanting to see for a long time and finally have.  I like that the film builds up to the carnage rather than just throwing it at us for the sake of it. Like with the rape scene, it built it up by showing us that fight sequence first instead of just opening with these guys brutally raping this woman. And the rape is pretty fucking sadistic and uncomfortable to watch, which it should be in every way. It's not nearly as brutal or as long as the I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE rape scene, but it definitely comes close to it. Not only do these guys gang rape her, but they beat her up and plunge a bowling pin into her vagina afterwards.  I truly felt so bad for Lisa and wanted to see these assholes get theirs in the end as bloody and brutal as possible.

      The characters are pretty well drawn out especially the characters of Steve and Lisa.  You thought Krug from The Last House On The Left was sadistic? Well, this guy came close to topping him as far as with rape.  We also get a transsexual guy named Sam along with some other characters that can be called stereotypes.  The Janitor character made me laugh with his sarcasm and potty mouth comebacks at the assholes. Now, there is a fuck load and when I mean a fuck load I mean a fuck load of fuck words in this movie, so if you are offended by that then this film is definitely not for you. Go watch something light like Twilight.  This movie is solely for exploitation/slasher fans only. There's A LOT of nudity in this movie. I don't just mean tits and ass. I mean tits, ass, pussy, and even penis (only in two sequences).  So again, if you can handle nudity and hardcore then this is for you. Guys out there, you will most likely enjoy this movie!

      Now, on to the kill scenes and the killer BBK. The kills in this film were over the top and balls out (pun intended). The best one and my favorite is the death by 69 kill. Yep, you heard right, smothered with a blow job and pussy in the face. Not a bad way to go out right?  My other favorite kill is that of the ball waxer that waxes this asshole's entire face off and sprays the room red with blood. The one kill that made me scream like a little girl and close my eyes was what the killer does to the transsexual dude. All I will say is he should have gotten that operation beforehand because he is now split down the center. We also got a cool scene where a severed head comes up through the ball machine. All in all, the gore gags were fucking brilliant. As for the killer, I loved the costume with the upside down bowling bag as a mask. And you gotta love bowling pins sharpened into spikes.

       The identity of the killer is a pretty cool twist that I didn't really catch onto until it was revealed. The only problem that I really had with this movie is that the clothing, music, and look of the film screamed the '80s, yet they still had some modern technology in the movie. Well, it didn't exactly mention when this film takes place, so I'm just going to assume that these kids are in the modern day and just like the '80s style of dress. I thought the writing and direction by Ryan Nicholson was very good as well. You can tell that he is a fan of the '70s/'80s horror. I definitely hope he makes another fun and crazy slasher like Gutterballs.  I've actually talked to Nicholson and he's a really nice and fun guy to talk to. It's really impressive that he started out doing Special FX and is now writing and directing his own movies along with helping design the gruesomeness himself. Pretty impressive. Definitely excited to watch the sequel Gutterballs 2: Balls Deep and his High School slasher Famine.

       The acting was pretty good for this type of film genre.  Of the cast though, Alastair Gamble as Steve and Dan Ellis as The Janitor really stuck out. Alastair played the asshole jock/rapist role perfectly. He was so unlikeable yet at the same time oddly hilarious with his over the top performance due to the fact that the character was always pissed off and the kinda guy you could see yourself getting into a bar fight with. He also had some hilarious lines like..

              "Joey, where the fuck is your head?"
                   Or my personal favorite...
         "  Fuck the game! Fuck BBK! And fuck this fucking bowling alley!"

       Dan Ellis was absolutely fucking hilarious in this film and would go on to star in many more of Nicholson's films such as Hanger and Bleading Lady.  The other actors and actresses did well with the roles they were given.  Nathan Dashwood as A.J. was pretty amusing with his weasel laugh. Nathan Witte was pretty cool as Jamie. Wade Gibb had some amusing scenes as Joey.  All in all, really dug the cast.

         Overall, Gutterballs is definitely worth checking out for you exploitation/hardcore slasher fans out there. Definitely not for the faint at heart or the squeamish.  If you like being disturbed, shocked, turned on, turned off, and grossed out for 95 minutes then by all means see this movie now! If you do see it though, watch the balls out uncut version, which you can order from Amazon or on the official website like I did. 


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