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Muck (2015)

DVD Cover (Anchor Bay)
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Overall Rating 26%
Overall Rating
Ranked #3,592
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After narrowly escaping an ancient burial ground, long forgotten and buried underneath the marshes of Cape Cod, a group of friends emerge from the thick, marshy darkness, tattered and bloody, lucky to be alive. They have already lost two of their friends in the marsh, presumably dead. They stumble upon an empty Cape Cod vacation house alongside the foggy marsh and break in to take shelter. Whatever was in the marsh is still after them and soon after one of them goes for help, the rest of the group learns that the evil in the marsh is not the only thing that wants them dead. Something worse, something more savage, was lying in wait just outside the marsh, in the house. What happens next is unspeakable, horror that cannot be unseen. These unlucky travelers spend their St. Patrick's Day trapped between two evils forcing them to fight, die, or go back the way they came. --IMDb
Kane Hodder
Kane Hodder
Lachlan Buchanan
Lachlan Buchanan
Lauren Francesca
Lauren Francesca
Jaclyn Swedberg
Jaclyn Swedberg
Puja Mohindra
Puja Mohindra
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Review by Crispy
Added: September 04, 2016
I remember stumbling upon Muck's Kickstarter page a few years ago. Boasting Kane Hodder and a cast full of Playboy Playmates and promising the 3 B's in spades, my interest was certainly piqued. I then forgot about it completely until stumbling across it on a streaming service. Turns out I'd have been better off leaving it forgotten.

Noah and his friends have decided to spend their vacation in West Craven, a small town in Cape Cod. Things have obviously gone horribly awry as we catch up with them running out of the marsh, half-naked, bloodied and terrified. Desperate for help, they break into an empty vacation home. It's got plenty of booze, but no phone, so Noah leaves his injured friends under the care of his pre-med girlfriend and sets back out into the night in search of help. Fortunately, he's able to find his way to a dive bar and makes a call to his cousin, Troit. However, while he's on his mission, his friends back at the house have discovered that whatever attacked them in the marsh isn't their only problem, as a particularly violent cult of some kind has set their sights on the weakened group.

After the movie ended, I am absolutely convinced that writer/director Steve Wolshe is fifteen years old. You see, T&A is a great accent to a slasher flick. In Muck, it's an important part of the foundation. In a movie about a homicidal, supernatural cult, taking time out to watch a woman take a full shower to rock music or watching another try on six different bra and panty sets in a bar's bathroom is a bit much. Naturally, I'm not saying I didn't appreciate these scenes, but I was ready to move on with the movie long before they ended. Plus, Troit just reeks of being Wolshe's personal fantasy idol. He's a hot, edgy guy who has chicks crawling over him, has a never-ending reservoir of wise-ass remarks (none of which were actually witty nor funny mind you) and is totally unbeatable in a hand-to-hand fight. The whole thing reads like a teenaged-written fanfic where the author injects an infallible version of themselves in among the main cast.

I guess in Wolshe's mind, all of that skin was supposed to replace any semblance of the plot Muck didn't have. It starts off well after the events has already happened, which isn't a problem in and of itself, but never goes back to recapture the details. All we know is that some evil force attacked them in the marsh and they were separated from two other people. Now that bloodthirsty cult seems to be terrified of this entity, and the dichotomy could have led to an interesting movie. Instead, all the time that should have been spent exploring this aspect was wasted on a married cougar awkwardly attempting to seduce Noah as he was looking for help. Later on in the movie, things were just starting to take shape (albeit with a shift in tone towards Grindhouse-esque action) when the movie simply ends right in the middle of a scene. As if I wasn't annoyed enough, he just had to add that insult to injury.

Perhaps it goes without saying that none of our cast aren't exactly suited for a career in front of a camera. Now, I know that's not a fair criticism; these guys and gals were hired more for their willingness to put their bodies on display than their acting skills (they excelled in this regard), but Puja Mohindra might be the only one who I would predict having a future in the business. Possibly Lachlan Buchanan if he's able to channel his charisma efficiently; I'm giving him the benefit of the doubt and putting the blame on how horribly written his character was.

Apparently, Muck is planned to be the first in a trilogy. While I'm sure it'd help plug some of the plot issues the film had, I don't exactly have any interest in following Wolshe on the rest of his little story. He'd have been better off stowing his delusions of grandeur and planning one coherent movie. Of course, we all know I'm a glutton for punishment and I'll watch them, but he's shown that even with a full story, his writing skills are nowhere near honed enough to deliver a satisfying experience. A completed project just might raise my opinion a bit, but as it stands, Muck's wanton skin and a small handful of decent kills only earns it a 2/10.
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