Combustible Celluloid
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With: Josh Stewart, Emma Fitzpatrick, Christopher McDonald, Navi Rawat, Randall Archer, Johanna Braddy, Lee Tergesen, Daniel Sharman, Andre Royo, Brandon Molale, Erin Way, Robert Pralgo, Justin Mortelliti, Shannon Kane, William Peltz
Written by: Marcus Dunstan, Patrick Melton
Directed by: Marcus Dunstan
MPAA Rating: R for strong bloody violence, grisly images, language and brief nudity
Running Time: 82
Date: 21/09/2012

The Collection (2012)

2 Stars (out of 4)

Hoard to Tears

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

Writer/director Marcus Dunstan and co-writer Patrick Melton worked on several of the Saw movies as well as Piranha 3DD, and their taste for torture and extreme gore carries over to this sequel. To their credit, the gore isn't as strong here as in other entries in this genre, and the movie instead focuses on inventive and imaginative set design, like something out of a gruesome Halloween haunted house.

The "Collector" from the first movie is still at large, and a thief, Arkin (Josh Stewart), who infiltrated his lair, is still a prisoner. When the collector sets a huge deathtrap for dozens of young people in the form of a hot dance party, Arkin escapes. Unfortunately, pretty Elena (Emma Fitzpatrick) becomes his next prisoner. Elena's wealthy father (Christopher McDonald) dispatches an elite rescue squad, who enlists the reluctant help of Arkin to find and navigate the Collector's hideout. But what happens when superior firepower and bravery are no match for the Collector's treacherous deathtraps?

Creepy traps lurking around every corner, plus displays of mutilated bodies formed into new shapes can cause chills, even without the benefit of characters or a story. Unfortunately, that's where the movie falters. The characters have wooden personalities, and their behavior can best be described as "unthinking." The villain, likewise, has no personality, and feels like a dull ripoff of slasher villains from the 1970s and 1980s. With no emotional pull the movie grows dull quickly, and no amount of creative gore can save it.

A new Blu-ray edition from Lionsgate comes with a commentary with director and co-writer Marcus Dunstan and co-writer Patrick Melton, five mini-featurettes, three alternate scenes, and a trailer. It also includes a digital "Ultraviolet" copy of the movie.

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