Jarv’s Schlock Vault: The Tripper

Ever heard of the trickle-down effect?

Jarv’s Rating: 2 Changs out of 4. Nowhere near as funny as it thinks it is, but compared to some of the slashers that I’ve seen recently it is at least passable.

This is a bloody strange piece of schlock. Seriously, it’s like a group of B-list types gathered together, got completely off their tits, and then decided to make the dumbest slasher movie that they could. Seriously, the cast to this is, well, brilliant for this type of film: Thomas Jane, David Arquette, Courtney Cox, Jason Mewes, Richard Gross, Luke Haas, Paz de la Huerta, Balthazar Getty and so forth. I mean, really, what the fuck? What are all these people doing in an immensely stupid film about hippies at a shitty Burning Man knock-off getting slaughtered by a lunatic in a shitty Reagan Mask? I mean, seriously, what the fuck is going on in the world?

I suppose that I should pretend to review this properly, but I’m struggling and it’s beyond simplistic. The Tripper opens with an astonishingly stupid flashback to a hippy protest that’s going to shut down the local lumber mill. A kid takes matters into his own hands and gets busy with a chainsaw. Unsurprisingly, he’s banged up. Fastforward to the present day and we’re introduced to the hippies- who include Jason Mewes and Luke Haas. They’re on a mission to ingest as much in the way of illegal narcotics at some fucking heinous music festival as they can. They have a few run-ins with “pig fucking red necks” (Arquette) and the local sherrif (Thomas Jane), there’s some nudity and whatnot, then everyone is messily murdered by a nutter in a Reagan mask. Survivor girl, Samantha (played by Jaime King) kills the nutter, or does she…

Well, no, she doesn’t as he’s still got time to polish off the music promoter.

Hippy Douchebags

The acting in this is completely and utterly acceptable. Every single actor puts in a decent performance, without any of them hitting real highs. With one exception: Thomas Jane is sporting the most ludicrous moustache since the 70’s. It’s a mighty handlebar effort and hogs the limelight to such an extent that if his performance was good- it’s OK- then it would be wasted because the ‘stache has a life of its own and blows everything else off the screen.

Heeeeeeereeeeees RONNIE!!!

There’s the odd laugh to be had from the script- the occasional amusing line, or comical moment, but I think the problems in this film start at this level. These are hippy tossers, and obvious drug addled hippy fuckers at that. Therefore to listen to a stoner’s opinion about George W. Bush being the worst president in history (might be true, I don’t know or care) is just a boring distraction. Seriously, as if these fucking tossers are remotely politically aware. Just fuck off. Also, on that note, I’d like whoever wrote this to take the rest of the half-baked social commentary running through this film and frankly jam it up their ass. If you can’t do it properly don’t do it at all. It’s supremely aggravating, because there are severely awful mixed messages here: on one hand, there’s a clear anti-capitalist message in the behaviour of the promoter and the mayor (shades of Amity Island, actually), then on the other there’s a clear pro-capitalist message in the depiction of the hippies as retards, protest as useless and that the area has been economically deprived since the mill shut. So which is it, bastards?

Worship the STACHE!!! WORSHIP IT!!!

Gore wise, there’s a fair amount. Ronnie does his job lopping off limbs and heads, and he’s also got a neat line in eviscerations. On that note, while I’m thinking about it, he’s not fussy about weaponry- he’ll use anything capable of stabbing, slashing or otherwise cutting bits off people. This is fair enough, but there’s nothing remotely original in it- you’ve seen all these kills before, even in shite like the Friday 13th Sequels. Still, I watch these films for the gore to some extent, so it’s not all bad.

Chainsaws do that, you know.

Then there’s the nudity. There’s fucking loads of it. This is really fair enough, considering the subject matter, but it is kind of surprising when you discover that the one person who doesn’t shed her clothing in the film is Jaime King. What? If she’s going to keep her top on, then what’s the point of her in a film like this? There are millions of more suitable Survivor Girl type actresses out there. It’s daft, sort of like casting Megan Fox as Ophelia- just completely strange and pointless.

The Tripper, though, does have one trump card that most modern slasher films don’t- Arquette directed, and everyone does seem to be having a blast. It’s really played completely straight and with some real relish. So while it is unimaginative, and it isn’t a fraction as clever as it imagines itself to be, it rocks along with a reasonable sense of fun and it does rock along at a fair old lick.

The promoter is covered in poop. Yeah, that's subtle. I wonder what they were getting at here.

Overall, compared to the absolute dearth of slasher movies out there this is a gem. The Tripper isn’t a dreadful film, and there is the odd chuckle to be had out of it, but by no means could it possibly be described as being any good. It’s an exercise in mediocrity, and the relentless, lack of imagination involved really sours what is an otherwise competent piece of schlock with a simply exceptional cast.

Until next time,

Jarv.

 

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About Jarv

Workshy cynic, given to posting reams of nonsense on the internet and watching films that have inexplicably got a piss poor reputation.

39 responses to “Jarv’s Schlock Vault: The Tripper”

  1. L Bronco says :

    “Megan Fox as Ophelia” That’s rather droll, sir.

    Consider yourself tweeted, you big goon.

    • Jarv says :

      Cheers Bronco.

      I’m nearly at the end of this heinous slasher binge now.

      Anyway, would you cast Megan Fox as Ophelia?

      The only quibble I had with this line was which Shakespeare heroine to use for the analogy. I nearly went with Cordelia, but it didn’t have as good a ring to it

      • Spud McSpud says :

        Would I cast Megan Fox as Ophelia?? You know me well enough by now to know that I would cast Megan Fox in ANYTHING. The more nekkid the better, obviously.

        Yes, Megan would play Ophelia in my naked Hamlet, in which the literal lack of any clothing (only on the females, naturally) more embodies the binding strictures that women found themselves in during Shakespeare’s era, and the subsequent setting free of women in the modern era. It’s all in the name of art, absolutely.

        For my next trick, I have a canvas on which I have washed away a picture of George Osborne (water-based poster paint, for the Warhol associations) with a particularly strong and warm stream of piss. I have called it PISSED OFF. Mr Saatchi, it’ll cost you a cool million and an evening of food and fantasy with your wife 😀

      • Spud McSpud says :

        Oh, and good review, btw. I would actually waste a couple of hours on this, if only to see Thomas Jane star as Seth Rogen’s Dad. That is one magnificent bastard of a ‘stache, man.

      • Jarv says :

        I did for a second forget about your penchant for that crack whore.

        Aesthetically very nice, but you can’t help but have the feeling that shagging her would be akin to being last in a soup kitchen.

  2. Droid says :

    Sounds okay I guess. I quite like Jamie King. Well, lookswise. But I don’t think she’s ever taken her clothes off for the camera. Not that I can recall anyway. I won’t ever be rushing out to see this one, but I guess I may watch it one day.

    • Jarv says :

      Sin City- has boob.

      • Droid says :

        Thankyou Mr Skin.

        Didn’t even remember that she was in it. Presume she’s one of the gang.

      • Jarv says :

        No.

        She’s the hooker that shags Mickey Rourke. I think- it’s been a while since I’ve seen it.

      • Jarv says :

        Man, she’s been in some fucking shitty films.

        The Spirit, White Chicks, My Bloody Valentine, Two for the Money, Cheaper by the Dozen 2.

        Fuck’s sake.

        Which reminds me, there’s a good few potential Astrodykes in the Sin City cast. Carla whatshername leaping to mind- and we know she’s not shy of casual nudity.

      • koutchboom says :

        Hahahah wow Jarv missed a chance to knock Pearl Harbor? It must be a really nice day outside, he can’t focus.

    • koutchboom says :

      Wasn’t she married to Kid Rock? Or a Playboy model or something?

  3. just pillow talk says :

    Sounds like if you pass by this on the tube, it’s worth a look.

    And I agree, that’s bullshit that the she didn’t take her clothes off. WTF? You’re in a slasher movie where everyone else has shed their clothing, and you don’t? tsk-tsk…

  4. Frank Marmoset says :

    This actually sounds like something I might like, I’ll keep an eye out for it. Horror comedies usually work for me, plus who doesn’t want to see Thomas Jane rocking a fine handlebar moustache?

    • Jarv says :

      It’s thoroughly average Frank- not as funny as it wants to be and not scary in the slightest. I know this is a silly warning given that I’m talking to the man that braved the entire Friday 13th Series and has now also finished Hellraiser, but I wouldn’t recommend going out of my way to watch this.

      It’ll pass the time alright, but well, there are better films out there- Cold Prey, for example.

      • Jarv says :

        PS- how were the last two Hellraisers? Did Kari get her norks out?

      • Frank Marmoset says :

        I’ve got one Hellraiser left to go, I’ll probably grit my teeth and power through it tonight.

        Watched part 7 last night, the one with Kari Wuhrer in it (to answer your question, yes, but not in a satisfying way – lots of blood was involved), and it was crap. Shit, man, they’re pretty much all crap. I’m even starting to retroactively hate the first one. Might have to watch it again once the series is finished just to remind myself it’s actually a good film.

      • koutchboom says :

        Well the first one is showing this week on the tele so I’m gonna watch that and pick up the new comic. I watched Hells 1-3 not that long ago but I really don’t remember them.

    • DocPazuzu says :

      I’ve watched all of the Hellraisers. After part 4 (yes, AFTER part 4) they all take a sharp nosedive. While 4 is shit, it’s SPACE SHIT and thus earns Paz Points. The rest are simply terrible dross, bottom-of-the-barrel horror movies about vague, evilly things that make no sense. The only thing that makes them Hellraiser movies is Doug Bradley showing up for five minutes of phoned-in cod philosophical bullshit for a paycheck.

      I hope all the goth chick pussy was worth it, Doug.

      • Jarv says :

        I hope all the goth chick pussy was worth it, Doug.

        Doug Bradley

        I think it’s fairly safe to say it was.

      • Jarv says :

        4 is terrible Doc- And bugger all of it is in Space. Just the bookends and a few kills. It’s got loads of that crap with Angelique (who is hot, to be fair and does get naked) in 17th Century France and 20th Century America that seems to go on forever.

      • DocPazuzu says :

        Yes, Jarv, but it’s terrible… IN SPACE!

        It even has a robot that explodes while trying to solve the puzzlebox. The only thing it lacks is a Coolio cameo.

      • koutchboom says :

        Is anyone going to check out the new Clive Baker comic dropping this week? I wonder whos doing the art though.

      • koutchboom says :

        YES! IT EVEN FEATURES A 10 PAGE BACK UP STORY BY….what the fuck???? Larry Wachowski??? Isn’t it Lana these days?

      • Jarv says :

        If it had tranny cyborg Space marine captains you could ALMOST talk me into that. And if more than 20% of it actually took place in space.

        Unfortunately it has a load of guff in France and a fucking Cenobite Dog. Not to mention that Pinhead seems to think he’s a Bond villain for much of it.

      • DocPazuzu says :

        I actually have a workprint version of Hellraiser 4 which I haven’t been arsed to watch yet.

      • DocPazuzu says :

        Well, Jarv, that’s how awful all the post-4 Hellraisers are. They made 4 look enjoyable.

      • Jarv says :

        I’ve had about three attempts at 5 (inferno?) and just abandoned it for being terrible. The amount of glowing reviews on IMDB for it is astonishing. It’s toss.

        So bad, in fact, that I abandoned my quest to complete the series.

  5. koutchboom says :

    Man I’ve seen this and not that long ago, but really don’t recall shit about it.

  6. Continentalop says :

    There is an ultra-low budget slasher film coming out I think you (Jarv) and Bart might like. “I Didn’t Come Here To Die.”

    At least I believe that’s the title. I’ll try to find out.

  7. Continentalop says :

    But in all honesty is there a more lifeless genre (pun intended) than the slasher film?

  8. Echo the Bunnyman says :

    This is, on the whole,very mediocre as Jarv says. I have good memories of it, but thats because I saw it at The Senator with Arquette and Jane in attendance and an in-theater gag that invlolved the tripper tackling and murdering some guy dressed up like a giant joint. Come to think of it, Arquette and Jane’s shenanigans were more fun than the movie itself. It’s also just an inexplicable movie. A strange mash-up of legit stuff and z-grade slashing.

  9. ThereWolf says :

    I’ll have a go at this one if it’s on Lovefilm.

    That IS a corking tache on The Jane!

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