Wednesday, November 28, 2012

So Mort It Be (2004)

Pack: Tomb of Terrors
Disc: 7

Subgenre(s): Comedy

Year: 2004

Rated: R
Length: 105 minutes

Director: Fabian Rush
Writer: Fabian Rush
Starring: Fabian Rush, D.J. Brouillard, Michelle DeMars

Synopsis: A classic tale of boy meets girl; boy chases girl, girl mutilates boy in bloody cult ritual.


Review: I'd pretty much given up on disc 7 of "Tomb of Terrors" by the time I got to So Mort It Be. Without doubt, it's the second worst disc in the pack with hardly entertainment value whatsoever. But if I'd gone with my instincts to switch So Mort It Be off after the first horrible 6 minutes then I would have missed out one of the best horror comedies ever. You never know what's going to turn up in these packs or within a movie itself so it's a good idea to stay open-minded no matter how bad something looks.

I'm not a big fan of comedy-horrors, but So Mort It Be tickled me in the same way that old episodes of Men Behaving Badly (the UK version) used to. Fabian Rush has such a range of cartoonish mannerisms and expressions that he's hilarious to watch at times. In partnership with Nathan Hall, the double-act of "Dante and Jack" is up there with "Gary and Tony" more than "Laurel and Hardy", but it's still pretty funny.

Unfortunately, when left to themselves or in a situation with other characters, Fabian Rush is the only one who can sustain the comedy, and even then he struggles to do so. Knowing that he also wrote and directed So Mort It Be indicates that he's a multi-talented individual who might find it better to specialise on either writing or embellishing his comedy persona rather than directing. With so much going on, he's clearly overreaching himself a little in this project.

Where So Mort It Be gives itself away the most as an amateur production is with the pacing. The converging story arcs mostly work but not without some lag. In particular, the "Gothic orgy" is as disappointingly dull as most student parties are in reality. With such a build-up, there should be more party action than what is shown to make it memorable. A lot more vulgar drunkenness and nudity would have hit the spot for sure.

The balance is almost right between the leads and their guests. Any more interaction would have made the movie even longer unless trims were made elsewhere. Thus, adding the menace of mutant rats was almost a stroke of genius. For all their comedic merits though, their silliness gets old after their first or second appearance.

Obviously, the budget didn't stretch to better effects which is a real shame considering how close everything else is to being good. There's no real gore to speak of either which makes So Mort It Be not so much a horror-comedy as just a comedy.

It's all played for laughs so there's not really much point in going into any great analysis of the characters. There are a lot of inconsistencies and comedic hypocrises along the way.

The actress who plays Lillith, Michelle DeMars, seems quite competent although she lacks Fabian Rush's charisma and timing. In fairness, everyone seems flatter when compared to Fabian, but Michelle doesn't seem to "work" the part or camp it up as much as necessary. There are some moments where she shines towards the end, but mostly she's upstaged by the puppets.

With its very witty dialogue, Fabian's "bloody good" English accent, and its ridiculously awful effects, I haven't laughed so much at any movie for years. I hasten to add that I was mostly laughing at it rather than with it, but I still really liked So Mort It Be.

Most Memorable Moment(s): Dante's fight with the mutant rats.

Originality: Very original for the time although not entirely in a good way. It's almost a throwback to things like The Cat and the Canary but with an Caddyshack spin which doesn't quite gel.

Best Line(s): "Women don't give me a chance either, but you don't see it turning me British."
Worst Line(s): "We've got a situation here, okay?"

Best Effect(s): The mutant rat puppets.
Worst Effect(s): Animated blood during the premonition sequence.

Goriness (out of 10): 3
Sexiness (out of 10): 3
Profanities (out of 10): 4

Hottest Actor/Actress: Michelle DeMars as Lillith.

Picture Quality: Average (slightly fuzzy)
Audio Quality: Average

Rating (out of 10): 5


IMDb or Wiki:

Final Thoughts: Not at all what I was expecting and mostly very funny.

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