skeleton crewAnchor Bay Entertainment
2009
R

“Can’t you see? This is like a bad movie.”

In the Early 1970’s a remote mental institution next to the Russian border was shut down by the police. Before it was closed, DR Anderson made a series of snuff films using his patients. The doctor filmed all the murders in 8mm, and started to call himself “The Auteur”. Thirty years later, an American film crew arrives in Finland to shoot a horror movie about the massacre, and are unaware that they are about to become the stars of their director’s real life snuff film, they are in one. The Auteur is slaying the Skeleton Crew one by one.

Skeleton Crew is yet another low budget horror flick that goes for the “meta” style of story–i.e., self-aware, a movie-within-a-movie setting, that kinda thing. Basically, we start off with a 1970s style slasher, where a brother and sister get into a bad accident and manage to find themselves being “cared for” by a mad scientist, when someone yells “CUT!”, and we find that we’re on location in Finland, when the confines of an abandoned mental hospital, where the movie is being filmed by a director who’s just a bit on the egotistical side, and his group of beleaguered thespians and grunts. While searching around the abandoned building, they stumble upon a secret room with a projector and a bunch of films of a doctor’s, um, “hobbies” let’s just say. The rest of the crew aren’t that impressed, but the director becomes obsessed, to the point of using his actors and crew to add to this collection himself. Wackiness ensues.

Overall, Skeleton Crew was better than I expected, in as much as there was some actual competent talent in the execution. The acting was tolerable, the editing was decent and the effects doable, and it wasn’t overly long, nor did I get bored much while viewing this. There are the requisite exploitation shenanigans that horror movies always feel the need to shoehorn in. Meh.

A good way to kill some time (no pun intended), Skeleton Crew is watchable and decent, but not really that memorable. Watch once and move on with your night.