• Klown Kamp Massacre

    Released by: Troma Entertainment
    Released on: 12/13/2011
    Director: Phillip H.R. Gunn, David Valdez
    Cast: Jared Herholtz, Ross Kelly, Ashley Bryce
    Year: 2011
    Purchase from Amazon

    The Movie:
    Clown camp…the place clowns go to learn their craft. Edwin’s dream of becoming a clown is shattered when he enrolls in clown camp and can’t make anyone laugh. He exacts his revenge on the non-laughers at the camp by murdering them all and then disappearing. Years later the camp is reopened and filled with aspiring clowns. The legend of Edwin lives on, and despite the warnings of a curse on the camp by the town nut job people are flooding into the camp to learn how to be a clown. One by one their lives end at the hands of the evil clown killer until it comes down to the last of the clown students to fight the madman and end the curse.

    Sound familiar? It should because it’s the standard formula for any slasher movie and won’t disappoint the fans of the genre on that level. And it won’t disappoint those who love creative kills and lots of bloodshed either. But it might disappoint those who like their slasher movies to have scares, and this one is void of that. The filmmakers go more for laughs than scares, however they do a pretty good job of the laughs part. Not all the jokes hit their marks, but some are pretty good and they really utilize the theme of clowns in coming up with some clever sequences.

    Now then, if clowns are not your thing (which is totally understandable) don’t dismiss the movie right away as a piece of crap. It kind of is, but it’s a piece of crap that grows on you as the movie plays out. The clown humor doesn’t paint the clowns in a very positive light and the movie is filled with clown-on-clown violence (and sex), so if you hate clowns you just may enjoy watching them die in ways that seem fitting. Acid-filled seltzer sprayers, cream pies packed with dynamite…great ways to kill a clown. And considering the budget restraints they were surely under, the makers do an effective job delivering the messy deaths. In fact the move itself looks pretty impressive for a low budget movie, with some interesting editing and creative lighting.

    The movie putters right a long at a good speed and fulfills the expectations of a movie of this caliber. The pervs get some great nudity (including a nasty little scene involving involuntary necrophilia), the hounds can enjoy copious amounts of gore, and the campy aspect is exactly what you would expect from such a title. The acting is ok, some clowns doing a better job than others, but with no one really stinking up the place. The music is also campy as heck, and although it certainly plays its part in keeping this film far from having a horror vibe, it definitely adds to the goofiness found throughout.

    Obviously the directors love slasher movies and pay homage to many of them here, and even though his one probably isn’t going to be talked about 20 years from now, it is entertaining. The film succeeds in looking bigger than it is and there seems to be enough effort put into the production to keep it from being forgettable, which isn’t overly common these days. Worth checking out, even if for no other reason than to watch clowns die horribly.

    Troma presents the movie with an aspect of 16:9 anamorphic widescreen. It looks as though it was shot digitally, and produces a nice picture. The colors look correct as do the skin tones, black levels have good shadow detail, and the overall image is clear and free of debris. No artifacts to report and no authoring issues were noticed. The audio is a 2.0 Dolby Digital track that seems to have the proper balance, and everyone sounds clear, and the music doesn’t assault the senses. It’s a good track that does the job.

    The supplemental material is plentiful, and for the most part worth watching if you dig the flick. There’s a good commentary to check out which features the directors and some cast members. It’s a typical one, but it fills the running time nicely and the various participants play well off one another. “Deleted Scenes” runs about four minutes, followed by a “Behind the Scenes” (15:01) that gives a good look at what was involved. Pretty standard fare, but good nonetheless. Next are a couple of short films by the two directors. One was made when they were in their teens, “Edwin” which is where they got their inspiration to make Klown Kamp Massacre. It runs just over 11 minutes and for anyone who made movies as a teen, it’s fun to watch. The second film is “Boob-A-Minute” (3:18) which seems to be a faux trailer. There’s a music video, which is a production still slideshow set to a few songs used in the film. “Clowny Webisodes” consists of seven short production featurettes (presumably on their website) that total about 20 minutes and with a “play all” option. These are not repeats of the stuff seen in the 15-minute featurette previously mentioned. Lastly, some “Tromatic Extras”: trailers for Mr. Bricks, Father’s Day, Poultrygeist, and The Toxic Avenger, and a 16-minute “Make Your Own Damn Greenscreen” which is also found on Produce Your Own Damn Movie!

    The Final Word:
    An entertaining and sleazy time that has some cleverness to it as well as being off the wall. Troma has given added lots of good extras making this release a bang for your buck.

    Comments 2 Comments
    1. Jeff D's Avatar
      Jeff D -
      Big fan of this movie. One of Troma's best releases in a long time. Good job Toddy!
    1. Todd Jordan's Avatar
      Todd Jordan -
      Thanks, man. Actually in the last year I've enjoyed a few Troma movies. Grim, There's Nothing Out There...Most recently Astron-6.