Going to Pieces: The Rise and Fall of the Slasher Film

"Good"

Going to Pieces: The Rise and Fall of the Slasher Film Review


All good things deserve a documentary about them, so why not the slasher film?

This Starz-produced documentary (which oddly has no director credited) gives a dutiful breakdown of the slasher flick's birth, death, rebirth, redeath, and so on until we reach the present day. As you might expect, progenitors Halloween and Friday the 13th get the bulk of screen time, with a goodly amount of footage devoted to interviews with the cast and crew (no Jamie Lee, alas). Every angle is covered, from special effects to script, but the film mostly focuses on the cultural impact of the slasher movie: Kids loved 'em, critics vilified them, and parents weren't happy at all when Santa Claus started killing people.

Of course, time moves on, and eventually sequels wear thin (they're blamed, interestingly, on 1980s Reagan-era greed), and the film shifts to discussing the various revivals of the genre in later years. A Nightmare on Elm Street gets plenty of coverage, of course, and much is made of April Fool's Day (perhaps the first "none of it really happened" movie, which many point to as the decline of the genre). Whether Apirl Fool's Day is a good film or a bad one is probably Going to Pieces' biggest debate. The film wraps up around the Scream era, with humor being noted as the latest trick used to revive the slasher movie genre from the dead.

Oddly, Pieces is lacking in what I'd consider some pretty key areas. There's not much mention of The Texas Chain Saw Massacre , and though it's not really a "slasher" film, there's only minimal coverage of The Blair Witch Project. In general, independent horror gets short shrift here, and that's too bad, because these two films have been extremely influential. Yet Rob Zombie gets more screen time than both put together.

For a documentary about slasher flicks, the interviews also feel awfully tepid. Though some of the locations are, well, strange (one poor guy is interviewed as he continually walks down an alley filled with garbage cans, in the dark), most of them feel academic and surprisingly dry. I know Wes Craven and John Carpenter can be a lot more exciting than this. I've seen them in person.

If you're a horror fan already, you really don't need to see Going to Pieces, but nostalgia might lead you to rent it and you'll probably have a good time remembering Slumber Party Massacre or Prom Night. But really, I'd say this is a film best-suited for someone with absolutely no cultural awareness, someone who'd not only never seen a horror movie but who'd never even heard of such a thing. His mind would be blown.

The DVD includes commentary track and bonus interviews.



Going to Pieces: The Rise and Fall of the Slasher Film

Facts and Figures

In Theaters: Friday 13th October 2006

Distributed by: ThinkFilm Inc.

Production compaines: thinkfilm, Starz Entertainment, Candy Heart Productions

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3 / 5

IMDB: 7.3 / 10

Cast & Crew

Producer: Rachel Belofsky, Rudy Scalese

Starring: as Narrator, as Himself, as Himself, Lilyan Chauvin as Herself, as Herself, as Himself, as Himself, Sean S. Cunningham as Himself, Herb Freed as Himself, Chela Johnson as Herself, as Herself, Jeff Katz as Himself, Paul Lynch as Himself, Harry Manfredini as Himself, as Himself, Gregory Nicotero as Himself, Robert Oppenheimer as Himself, as Herself, Aine Leicht as Herself, Gage Leicht as Himself, as Himself, as Himself, Natasha Talonz as Herself, as Himself, as Himself, Anthony Timpone as Himself

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Manchester by the Sea Movie Review

Manchester by the Sea Movie Review

This may not be the cheeriest movie of the season, but it's so skilfully written,...

Live By Night Movie Review

Live By Night Movie Review

Ben Affleck launched his directing career 10 years ago with his film of Dennis Lehane's...

La La Land Movie Review

La La Land Movie Review

After storming awards season with Whiplash two years ago, writer-director Damien Chazelle returns with something...

Assassin's Creed Movie Review

Assassin's Creed Movie Review

Hopes were high that this film might finally crack the curse of movies based on...

Silence Movie Review

Silence Movie Review

Faith is a topic Martin Scorsese can't quite shake, courting controversy with complex films like...

A Monster Calls Movie Review

A Monster Calls Movie Review

A difficult movie to market, this isn't actually the BFG-style fantasy adventure it looks like....

Monster Trucks Movie Review

Monster Trucks Movie Review

Word has it that a 4-year-old came up with the idea for this unapologetically silly...

Advertisement
Collateral Beauty Movie Review

Collateral Beauty Movie Review

Dramas exploring the nature of death and the true meaning of life are always in...

Paterson Movie Review

Paterson Movie Review

Unpredictable filmmaker Jim Jarmusch ricochets from his artful vampire movie Only Lovers Left Alive into...

I, Daniel Blake Movie Review

I, Daniel Blake Movie Review

At 80 years old, British filmmaker Ken Loach won his second Cannes Film Festival with...

Why Him? Movie Review

Why Him? Movie Review

Writer-director John Hamburg continues to recycle the formula that made his first hit Meet the...

Passengers Movie Review

Passengers Movie Review

Anchored by the almost ridiculously engaging Chris Pratt and Jennifer Lawrence, this sci-fi movie travels...

Neruda Movie Review

Neruda Movie Review

Clever Chilean director Pablo Larrain (who also directed Natalie Portman's Jackie) takes on the Nobel-winning...

The Eagle Huntress Movie Review

The Eagle Huntress Movie Review

Narrated by Daisy Ridley (The Force Awakens), this documentary is one of the most gripping...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.