Saturday, October 10, 2009

THE RETURN OF 31 DAYS OF HORROR: #10 Midnight Meat Train

Vinnie Jones is so intimidating that he’s almost comic. He’s a cartoon mountain man who looks like the love child of the bulldog from Tom and Jerry and the guy who kicks sand in your face in those old ads. It just seems preposterous that anyone that huge and angry could exist.

Vinnie Jone's Father

Vinnie Jone's Mother

Perhaps that’s why he’s so rarely used well. Jones inevitably appears in crappy comedies in which he’s revealed to be a big old softie, or as unimagitive muscle, the sad fact is that while Jones himself is always fun to watch, the movies he’s in are rarely so. So it’s nice to see Jones get a vehicle that makes use of his uniquely hulking presence and a shame so few people got a chance to see it.

Midnight Meat Train got one of the most half assed releases I’ve ever seen a movie receive, in a lot of ways it’s even worse then what happened to Trick R’ Treat since Warner’s at least seemed to realize that there movie was good, while Lionsgate decided to basically run out onto the street telling random people not to see it. Lionsgate dumped it into dollar theaters on the first week, didn’t screen it for critics, and gave it zero ads. Coupled with a title that sounds like a bad porn joke you’d be forgiven for thinking Midnight Meat Train was a huge pile of shit.

But you’d be wrong and for horror fans looking for something new and tired of the same old torture porn it’s practically a God send. Vinnie Jones plays Mahogany, butcher by day, freelance butcher by night. Jones rides the late New York subways, killing unlucky nite owls with a huge hammer and then… well let’s just say he has a purpose, and it’s not quite so simple as you think. A photographer, played by Paul Walker 2.0 Bradley Cooper, starts to become suspicious of Jones and starts following him on his nightly sojourns. As you might guess things rapidly go down hill. Midnight Meat Train is by no means a perfect movie, some of the CGI gore effects are pretty dire, there’s a whole subplot about a snooty art gallery owner, played by Brooke Shields for some God damn reason, that is utterly cuttable, and it has a twist at the end that while darkly hilarious if you think about it, is just kind of silly if you don’t. At the same time it’s creative, stylish, funny, and genuinely frightening, with oodles of often imitated never duplicated Clive Barker kink. It’s more then worth your time.


Wings1295 said...

I liked this one, too. The end was a bit... odd, but the film is good.

Shaun S said...

I wasn't too impressed with this one. I had a hard time with the effects, the CGI was bad enough to distract me. I agree with the Brooke Shields part, another reason I didn't like this too much. There are some good points to the movie and it is worth seeing, but it isn't making my list of favorites anytime soon. Oh, and you are right, Vinnie is the man.

deadlydolls said...

I was so disappointed in this film because I wanted to like it so much, especially following its dire treatment. Still, I just kind of despised it. The look they chose--this icy blue CGI'd mod style--just didn't fit the material. Cooper was fine but his character's choices were too dumb to believe, although I did like how his relationship was treated. And I too heart Vinnie Jones. He and Ray Stevenson need to do a wacky R-rated action buddy comedy STAT.

Bryce Wilson said...


Bryce Wilson said...

Yeah I'm definitely not arguing that this movie is some kind of masterpiece. It's flawed up the Ying Yang, but it's dark sense of humor, and some genuinely gruesome and fun moments makes it a definite recommend to me despite it's flaws.

deadlydolls said...

The ending is actually very interesting. Unfortunately, the film had just lost my interest by that point.

I reviewed it a few months back here if you're interested:

Bryce Wilson said...

Always : )