Tuesday, December 10, 2019

A God Among Cleaners: One Must Fall (2018)

One Must Fall (2018) (AKA "1 Must Fall")
Rating: ***1/2
Starring:  Vincent Lee Alston, Daniel de Weldon, Rebekah Lynn Dow

First heard about One Must Fall (2018) through a Youtube recommendation and is probably one of the few times that site recommended something that actually hits my interest. (For my gods' sake, NO! I do NOT want Epic Rap Battle of Histories, Youtube mods!) The trailer looked gooey in gore and teased the plot enough to get my attention so I noted myself to keep an eye for it and thankfully, it's an alright film once I finally get to see it.

Accused of fraud by her pig of a boss, Sarah (Julie Streble) is fired from her high rise office job and her gay best friend Alton (Andrew Yackal) gets the chopping block too for sticking up for her. Keeping their spirits up, the pair join forces and sign up for a new job as crime scene cleaners, which is recently getting a lot of work due to a suspected serial killer making their way through 1986 Louisville, Kentucky. Unbeknownst to Sarah and Alton, their crew is about to be this killer's new target when one day, they're called in to clean up an abandoned paint factory that law officials assume as just another crime scene, not knowing that the maniac responsible for the sticky and chunky mess is still lurking around the place, looking for fresh victims.

One of the things I came to like about One Must Fall (2018) is how it utilizes satirical comedy and playful writing to build around its premise and characters, to the point that it barely felt like a horror film and more of an indie comedy-drama with all of the banter thrown around the first half of the plot, save for some snippets of our nameless killer torturing and killing random victims in a span of a minute or two. This pun-filled direction did quite a lot of good in regards to the chemistry between the actors and even more once the film decided to shift gears into full-on slasher horror, which is by all means equally interesting and undoubtedly blood-red messy, making their demise reasonably cathartic and even worrying.

Regarding the horror elements, One Must Fall (2018) amalgamates tropes from slashers, torture porn and even serial killer movies, dropping most of the established comedic tone and replace it with a mean and sadistic run with an unnamed killer (played by Barry Piacente with an exotic suaveness) filling the scenes with monologues pertaining himself as God and why what he does is good for the behalf of everybody involved, whenever he's not making mince meat out of people. It could have been cringy for all of the dark preaching, but Piacante delivers his line with so much dry humor and confidence that his character comes out as both cruel and badass despite the simplicity of his appearance. In turn, the gore effects here are phenomenally done mostly in practical effects and sparing almost no one from the carnage, leading to a truly shocking finale that had me thinking this is one of those film that would end with no one left alive and kicking.

Minor spoilers, we do have some survivors and this is where I have a small gripe; with all of that carnage, I was egging to see a fair chance our protagonists would put up at least a decent fight and, yes, they somewhat did, but it was done and over so quickly that the ending felt a tad rushed. The only complimentary note to make up for the lack of a longer and more exciting exit is a certain douche's comeuppance and the quick-fix done to a character's uber-severe injury, the latter so hilarious looking for how bad it is, yet fitting with the movie''s more comical tone.

Hopefully, we get to see more of One Must Fall (2018) given the kind of ending it implies but, for now, it's safe to say this movie at least delivers what it promises, a fair and easy slasher-comedy that's rich in gore and characters you can mostly side with, neatly built around an interesting premise.

1 female seen murdered
1 female seen disemboweled, bashed with a hammer
1 male implied suicide via shotgun, scalp and brain matter seen
1 male had his throat cut with a machete
1 male eviscerated with a concrete saw
1 male stabbed through the head with a garden shears
1 male garroted with a winched rope
1 male gets a thrown machete through the back, impaled
1 male scalped and stabbed on the groin with a machete, dies from wounds
Total: 9*

(*I left out the chunks of victims being cleaned out at the killer's lair as there's barely any full body to count and God knows how many dead folks make up that pile.)

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