Hey folks, Valkor here. With this next piece, I've come to a crossroads of sorts and I'm gonna take things (for now) in a different direction. Rather than round up a review with "good", "bad", or "ugly", for the film "Basement Jack", I'm gonna break it down into two categories "Huh?" and "WTF?", because… wow… just wow.
Basement Jack tells the story of Karen (Michelle Morrow), who follows this psycho Killer Jack Riley (Eric Peter-Kaiser) aka "Basement Jack", mainly because he's been following her after she survived a past attack on her and her family. And now he wants to finish the job. But she's not gonna lie back and take it, she's out looking for him. But let's take it from the top. Karen and her boyfriend are outside of her family's home, getting their freak on during a major lightning storm when suddenly a news report comes on the radio, which puts things to a halt. It seems there was another killing in the area and it freaks Karen out as it's a little close to home, so much so that she wants to go in the house. Inside, the lights are out and it would seem no one's home until they enter the dining room area and find Karen's family dead and set up to look like they're ready to have the dog for dinner. The brother who is somewhat alive, motions with his eyes that someone is there, when Karen and her guy turn around, well, there's Jack… as a kid. He does away with the boyfriend, chases after Karen, they go at it, with Karen taking a slice, and it all ends with them running out the house and a police officer firing a gun.
When is it ever appropriate for a teenage girl to bang her boyfriend OUTSIDE the family home, on the front yard, with the family JUST INSIDE?
The officer's first reaction to Karen coming out the house was to SHOOT??
Fast forward, Karen is now hoofin it going who knows where, when we cut to Officer Chris Watts (Sam Skoryna). Dude is getting reprimanded because he forgot to read a perp his Miranda rights. We switch back to Karen who comes across a guy sittin in his car, seemingly sleeping. But upon closer inspection the guy is dead with half his face sliced off. She throws him out and takes the car and is later questioned by Chris, who finds her sleeping in the car. Just when he's about to nail her for theft, he gets called back to the office.
Karen finds a dead guy in a car, and her first reaction is to simply toss him out and take his vehicle. Are we to assume Jack sliced the dude up like a Christmas ham? Oh and don't tell the first cop you meet "hey there's a dead guy on the road", noooooo… Let's hope I can stall/seduce him so he might simply go away.
Back at headquarters, Chris and crew are told by Sgt. Pignataro (M. Steven Felty) that there is a rash of murders, all leading up to the town and he wants it stopped. They deduce that it's the work of Jack Riley (Basement Jack), who's hiding in basements and killing the inhabitants of the homes. His next victims reside in the home of police officer Wytynek (Joel Brooks). Jack kills the family, and someone else who came to check on em, and upon the officer's arrival, he gets waxed too; the family is propped up like mannequins. Chris runs into Karen again, they talk about Jack when Chris gets the call that officer Wytynek and his family are dead. The two race to the home where upon arrival - Karen is arrested for Grand Theft Auto and also as a suspect in the murders of the officer and his family.
Who let's a civilian walk onto a crime scene?
Who has time to arrest a civilian, fuck that, who has the time to CHECK THE PLATES of a car that just arrived on the scene of a crime, with an officer as a passenger, and then arrest the passenger for grand theft AND A SUSPECT for the officer's death?
Throughout the film, we learn a bit more about Jack. Actually it's not so much about him, but how much he was tortured by his mother (played beautifully by Lynn Lowry, who is just so damn good and so damn delicious at the same time) growing up. Anytime he'd do anything bad, or it's implied he's done bad things, the mother would electrocute him. First with a battery, then he's given electroshock therapy, another time he has water at his feet and the mother shocks him with wires, all the while she's berating him for what he's done but always ends with "Remember, Momma loves you, with a cuddle and a kiss".
Back to the main story, Jack is getting his kill on, Karen reveals that she's going after him, and Chris is caught in the middle, which ultimately leads to Karen and Jack going at it. The ending, to say the least, has an open ending that could lead to a second film, should this film somehow gain an audience. Frankly, I don't see it happening as there's just too much confusing shit going on and moments that will just make you wanna throw stuff.
That's not to say the main cast don't do their job; as Basement Jack, a silent psycho killer, Eric Kaiser is kinda cool up until he puts on that dolly mouth and well… he starts to lose some cool points. I also enjoyed Michelle Morrow as Karen because she has a Linda Hamilton/Sarah Connor look about her and I find it so sexy. Finally I give big ups to M. Steven Felty, who plays his role as Sgt. Pignataro; if ever Chris Nolan decides to do another Batman film and Gary Oldman doesn't come back as Commisioner Gordon, this guy would make a great, gritty, replacement.
But if you think I'm kidding about how off the wall this film is, here are a couple more scenarios to wrap your brains around: When Jack and Karen are battling it out, Jack stabs Karen in the gut… and she goes on living because by appearance she doesn't look stabbed, but it's mentioned she needs treatment for her wounds. Now during that scene, Jack is seemingly dead, the EMTs arrive and what do they do? Try to revive Jack and they let Karen bleed. They don't really look at her wounds, they just tell her to get to a hospital and drive off with Jack.
Finally my favorite WTF moment: Jack walks into the police station and starts killing off everyone, which is like 5 or 6 officers, one while her gun is drawn and he's only holding a knife AND THE OFFICER DOESN'T FIRE A SHOT!!! Plus where were the rest of the officers, because at the end of the film a whole mess pop up.
And there really are more moments that boggle the mind, but my recommendation for Basement Jack is to either avoid it at all cost, or if you do plan on seeing it, catch it with friends because the shit that goes down has to be seen to be believed. I know that when we go see such films we're supposed to throw out disbelief, but with Basement Jack, the film makes it incredibly difficult. So out of TOV 5 star Basement Jack gets 1 star.
And remember, Valkor loves you… with a cuddle and a kiss… with a cuddle and a kiss…