Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Population 436 Revew

Population 436 is a movie that a lot of people just dismissed right away. So much in fact, that when I was working at a video store for a few years, no one would trust me on the recommendation, and only a select few watched this film. So it sat next to some other horror movies that we cycled through the new release wall, even though they weren't new releases by any stretch of the imagination. We were a weird video store like that, always cycling through what were obviously not new releases, and trying to squeeze an extra buck out of them.

But back to the topic at hand, Population 436; the story revolves around a man named Steve Kady (played by Jaremy Sisto of Six Feet Under fame), traveling through a remote part of the country to talk about the population of a small town, and along the way discovers some bad things.

But before I jump to the bad things, let us consider another story…and I’ll tie it in, don’t worry.

The Lottery was a story where the population control was being implemented by shooting someone via a lethal lottery system.

This movie basically copies the premise and then switches it out a little. The story takes another piece from the movie Dolls, which I reviewed on this blog earlier this year.

Every time someone breaks down outside of the city, they are welcomed into the flock as a replacement for someone that has just passed away. Keeping the population at 436, and becoming an oddity, and therefore forcing the main character to come to the town and fill the void.

The movie really takes a high road in the middle, where the guy from the Census Bureau gets caught up with a local woman, who attempts to help him escape, as revelations of the city are more pronounced to him. He manages to skirt leaving, but the sheriff’s won’t allow such a thing, and this is where you will want to set the brakes on this independent horror film.

Here’s a trailer for the film, Population 436:

Just when I thought this film couldn't get worse, or steal more from others, enter none other than the singer of the band Limp Bizkit. That’s right, Fred Durst is seen in this film as Johnny law, and we’re treated to his acting abilities. I must admit, I didn’t think this film was going to be that good, but he pulled off his role quite nicely, and the rest of the cast tried their best to work with this convoluted storyline of time and space. It really had its problems, and well, it just was lame towards the end.

Steve begins to try to get out of the place, and convinces a young girl to help him do it. Together they forge a plan which ties up law enforcement, and gets him out alive.

This movie could have ended with him just leaving, but the camera turns towards the entrance of the town, where a car has appeared and a flat tire has ensued. Forcing a pair to take Steve and his accomplices place, returning the population to the normal number, and completing the beginning, middle, beginning, end cycle.
Wow, that was a lot of text, I’m sorry.

The movie isn’t that great, but it is palpable enough to be better than most of the films that you find on the Sci-Fi channel. This film, might at one point have been produced with that in mind, and it works well. The camera work is steady, the production values are somewhat good, and the actor that plays Steve, really tries hard not to mess up what could be one of the worst roles ever taken.

I’m not even that upset that Fred Durst shows up in this film.

There is a creepy nature to this town, but the resemblance to The Lottery by Shirley Jackson, is just too much for me, and I begin to wonder if that’s why this movie was intentionally buried at time of release.

Overall, Population 436 is not something that you’re going to be clawing your way to get, but if you’re a collector of all things Tales From The Crypt, maybe it’s something you want to invest your money into. I’m sure you can find it online and in our store for cheaper than most dvd’s, and for you horror freaks, you’ll welcome Population 436 to your dvd collection.

This film has its problems, but so do a lot of other films. I didn’t find it too bad, so rent before you buy.

If you enjoyed that film, or just are interested in more of these sub-standard films, check out the following for a great time, especially with Friday June 13th 2008 coming up!

Demon Knight via Amazon.com
Bordello of Blood via Amazon.com
The Plague via Amazon.com
Ritual via Amazon.com
Tales From The Crypt Series via Amazon.com
The Faculty via Amazon.com

Looking for grindhouse, horror, or sci-fi films? Please check out our amazon astore featuring all things horror. Don't trust astore? Check out amazon.com, surprisingly they have more grindhouse,horror,and rare sci-fi than you may not have thought possible.

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A writer first, cat lover second, and some other stuff too. Human, with lots of faults, and terrible communication.
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