Camp Dread (2013) | Eric Roberts calls the shots in the 1980s-style reality show horror that’s a real misfire
Washed-up filmmaker Julian Barrett (Eric Roberts) hopes to re-capture the success of his 1980s Summer Camp slasher trilogy with a new reality TV show, Dead TV. Installing a group of delinquents in a camp kitted out with cameras; he offers the misfits a million dollars and the chance to avoid prison or rehab if they manage to ‘survive’ a number of elimination challenges. But with the eliminations being permanent, winning the game becomes a fight for survival…
On paper, this modern day slasher from director Harrison Smith (who penned the excellent 2011 mystery The Fields) sounds alot like 2002’s Big Brother-inspired terror flick My Little Eye fused with 1980s-styled summer camp horrors of old. But having watched this twice – in case I missed something – I’ve dubbed it Camp Dread-ful.
The unhappy campers are an unlikeable bunch of losers (drug addicts, murderers, etc) who spend most of the film slagging off each other or their group therapist (Felissa Rose), who was the original star of Summer Camp. Their death scenes, which include hanging, drowning, strangling and beheading, are poorly executed; Eric Roberts sleepwalks through his part; and don’t get me started on the anti-gay humour. Camp Dread should have been a game changer, but it ends up being woeful in every respects. Better luck next time Harrison.
Camp Dread is out on DVD in the UK from Imagine Entertainment