The Ballad of Buster Scruggs
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All Critics (18)
| Top Critics (1)
| Fresh (7)
| Rotten (11)
Loud, brash, and almost entirely laugh-free.
The horror element from the creatures fails to produce any effective jumps or scares and there is no sense of high stakes involved in the fate of a bunch of, mostly unlikeable, characters.
It looks to me like something that lost its way in the edit... overall I think it doesn't hang together.
Crispian Mills's film is made with vigour, but might attract only a narrow audience.
It takes a while to find its stride as fracking begins in the grounds of the frightfully posh Slaughterhouse School but is very funny - and spectacularly gory - once it does.
The jokes are lame, laboured and signposted or just not funny, and the meat of the story -- the creatures emerging from the sinkhole -- takes far too long to arrive to finally kick the film out of its torpor.
The script simply isn't sharp enough here to sell as proper reverence, instead coming off as a cheap wannabe with a dislodged funny bone and very little bite.
Bits are good, bits are bad and quite a lot is plain baffling but the overall effect is invigorating.
A fracking-related subplot is possibly a step too far in the name of topicality, and the monsters look like the offspring of the dog from Ghostbusters and a blancmange. But it's good, if not exactly clean, fun.
Unless you're fed up with comedy-horror films which blend Tom Brown's Schooldays with Jurassic Park, then you might like the thoroughly bonkers Slaughterhouse Rulez...
Early on, there are stray flashes of the class-savvy romp this script wanted to be, but they're drowned out by gag after jolt after obvious gag and jolt.
Showing more enthusiasm than aptitude, this earns 'could do better if it tried' on its report card - but it's a strange enough genre mix to be vaguely worth a look.
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