Combustible Celluloid
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With: Andy Powers, Laura Allen, Peter Stormare, Christian Distefano, Chuck Shamata, Elizabeth Whitmere, Victor Cornfoot, Lucas Kelly, Emily Burley, Matthew Stefiuk, Michael Riendeau, Miller Timlin, Robert Reynolds
Written by: Jon Watts, Christopher Ford
Directed by: Jon Watts
MPAA Rating: R for horror violence and gore, and for language
Running Time: 100
Date: 06/24/2016

Clown (2016)

1 Star (out of 4)

Funny Blah Blah

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

While clowns are scary to many, filmmakers Christopher Ford and Jon Watts give the white-faced subject matter behind this loathsome horror movie only a cursory exploration; the result is not much fun.

When a hired clown fails to show up for his son's birthday party, real estate agent Kent McCoy (Andy Powers) happens to find an old clown costume in a trunk at one of his properties. He saves the day, and falls asleep with the suit on. In the morning, he finds he can't get it off.

His wife Meg (Laura Allen) manages to remove the nose, but it takes a chunk of skin along with it. After more failed attempts, Kent finds the previous owner of the suit, Herbert Karlsson (Peter Stormare), and finds that he is, in fact, possessed by a demon. He must feed on children before the suit can come off. Will Kent succumb to demon's wishes?

The story behind Clown is actually better than the movie itself; apparently director/writer Watts and co-writer Ford (who later made Cop Car) made a fake trailer for a non-existent movie, and credited it to Eli Roth. Roth saw it and commissioned an actual movie (and also played a clown).

Clown could have been funny, which it isn't, or it could have been scary, which it also isn't. It could have been informative. It isn't; it more or less uses the same historical idea as the terrific Krampus, about an evil demon morphing into a children's favorite. Instead, it callously focuses on grown-ups terrorizing children, and especially a father terrorizing his own child. (Not to mention the lasting psychological damage this stuff would do.) It's no wonder this sat on the shelf for years.

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