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

Swallows and Amazons Movie Review

Swallows and Amazons Movie Review

After a number of films, TV series and stage adaptations, Arthur Ransome's beloved 1930 novel...

David Brent: Life on the Road Movie Review

David Brent: Life on the Road Movie Review

The original BBC sitcom The Office ran for 14 episodes from 2001 to 2003, and...

The Childhood of a Leader Movie Review

The Childhood of a Leader Movie Review

Bold and intelligent, this dark drama is a challenging portrait of the making of an...

Pete's Dragon Movie Review

Pete's Dragon Movie Review

This hugely enjoyable adventure is a loose remake of the 1977 Disney hit that blended...

The Shallows Movie Review

The Shallows Movie Review

With a simple premise and plenty of visual style, Spanish filmmaker Jaume Collet-Serra (Unknown) takes...

Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates Movie Review

Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates Movie Review

Watching this gross-out comedy, it's clear that the gifted cast and crew had a great...

Nerve Movie Review

Nerve Movie Review

With a premise that feels almost eerily current, this stylish thriller revolves around a phone...

Advertisement
The Carer Movie Review

The Carer Movie Review

Brian Cox gets the role of a lifetime in this warm comedy about living life...

Born to Be Blue Movie Review

Born to Be Blue Movie Review

Writer-director Robert Budreau takes a stylised approach to this biopic of the legendary jazz artist...

Jason Bourne Movie Review

Jason Bourne Movie Review

It's been nine years since Matt Damon and Paul Greengrass collaborated on The Bourne Ultimatum,...

The Commune [Kollektivet] Movie Review

The Commune [Kollektivet] Movie Review

Veteran Danish filmmaker Thomas Vinterberg (Festen, The Hunt) returns to a smaller homegrown story after...

The BFG Movie Review

The BFG Movie Review

For his adaptation of the Roald Dahl classic, Steven Spielberg reunited with screenwriter Melissa Mathison,...

Finding Dory Movie Review

Finding Dory Movie Review

It's been 13 years since the release of the Disney/Pixar hit Finding Nemo, and filmmaker...

Star Trek Beyond Movie Review

Star Trek Beyond Movie Review

This is where the Star Trek franchise officially shifts from thoughtful drama into thunderous action....

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.