Hellbent ★★½

This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

This review may contain spoilers.

“Relax, this guy's about as dangerous as a carrot.”

Hellbent is a 2004 slasher directed by Paul Etheredge following a group of gay friends who are celebrating Halloween in West Hollywood, a neighborhood that's being prowled by a killer wearing a devil's mask. One of them, Eddie (Dylan Fergus), who works for the police, brings the others through some woods to check out a recent murder scene. They ignore the mask-wearing killer, who follows the group to a club, where he starts decapitating them one at a time -- until the only ones left are Eddie and Jake (Bryan Kirkwood), a potential love interest.

Hellbent feels like what happens when you take the production value of a porno, a generic slasher plot, a soundtrack that could only exist in 2004 and an LGBTQ theme and somehow churn out a somewhat entertaining movie.

Logically, the film isn’t good; the characters feel overly horny and unrealistic, the acting is bad and the practical effects look terrible but at its brisk runtime of 1hr20min, it never feels boring and is still pretty fun, especially with the awesome-looking killer.

Sure there’s some transphobia which ages the film horribly but I admire that the character in drag feels somehow more grounded than everyone else; the film falls into numerous cliches but never feels formulaic and I like that the movie is inclusive of gay people, as it’s not something often seen in horror.

Overall, not the best, but a fun movie overall.

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