Thursday, July 16, 2020

Who Dares To Ride?: CarousHell (2016)

CarousHell (2016)
Rating: ***
Starring: Steve Rimpici, Sé Marie, Haley Madison

It's a testament to how far I've gone a slasher fan when the phrase "killer carousel unicorn slasher" doesn't even faze me.

Meet Duke, the prettiest goddamn unicorn in the world. He's stuck working in a fun park as one of the carousel horses and he's hating every minute of it as day by day, it's nothing more than snot-nosed brats riding on his back while he's forced to grin and bear it. He feels his life is going nowhere and yearns to finally get out to make the world pay, but little does he and everybody else know is that his day of reckoning is near.

After a fat kid took a ride on him and abused him with boogers one day, Duke had enough and breaks out of the carousel to start stalking down the boy, goring, stomping, and bucking everybody else that got in the way or does he just felt like killing. Trailing him is Cowboy Cool, one of the mascots of the fun park who's now well aware of Duke's killing spree and has apparently come prepared to end him. But will he make it in time? Or will the pissed-off equine horror gets his hooves bloodied with fat kid guts?

And for God's sake, will someone just pay the pizza guy?

With a running time of only an hour and six minutes, CarousHell is micro-budget do-it-yourself slasher horror comedy done well, heartily serving a good amount of gory demises one would not expect coming from a levitating carousel horse with an attitude, as well as a few good laughs along the way. It's story may not pack much of a surprise as it is the bare bone slasher formula of someone - or something, in this case - getting wronged, thus going on a killing spree against anyone who comes within hooves length, only the film follows the flow in a near-parodying self-satire manner, even chucking in a random human killer who's not too happy that a plastic unicorn has stolen his thunder. (Though he's still polite enough to let said killer plastic unicorn borrow his axe) 

Much of what makes the humor in CarousHell mostly work is its writing and the energetic execution by everyone involved, whether on or behind the screen. Yes, there are a few gags that missed, felt too cheesy or went on too long, particularly the ones involving a pair of (possibly incestuous?) Canadians who openly despise Americans, but the rest of the jokes are a gaggle of laughs like its jab at bronies, the adult fans of My Little Pony; a montage of Duke partying with his soon-to-be victims and a running gag of director Steve Rudzinski as Joe The Pizza Guy who's dedication to his job made him oblivious to a girl's constant flirting and wants nothing more than to get paid for the pizza he's delivering.

And then there's Steve Rimpici as Duke. (Or, rather, the voice of Duke) Despite the limited effects used to make our killer unicorn "alive" (I think they call it "chuckimation"?), Rimpici's lively voice acting and given script gave enough of an identity to the plastic menace that its kinda hilarious seeing how bitter Duke has become. Thus, his enjoyment from dismembering random people and, too, his confusion to how some of them react to him from casual acknowledgement to horrified surprise often feels very infectious in turn, as you root for him in his often distracted mission on ending one boy's life.

Speaking of dismemberment, I do like the fact that albeit having a talking horned horse as a villain, CarousHell embraces the absurdity of its plot and simply have Duke murder his victims like any human slasher would, limiting horn goring to a couple of kills while filling the rest of the bodycount with death by machetes, garrotes, plastic flamingos or, among the few that got me laughing, ninja stars and laser vision that came out of left field. How he does it doesn't matter, but what does is the gore used here looking way better than it should be given the small budget this movie had to work on, so kudos to the special effects people responsible to this film's splashy latex parts and chunky blood! The effects rock, so you all rock!

So, not much of a movie for those looking for something less ridiculous, but CarousHell is made for good cheesy laughs and a quick night of nearly decapitated heads and unicorn sex. If you ever find yourself the chance to see this movie, give it a try or else face the wrath of Duke! IN HELL!

1 male gored on the neck
1 male hacked on the head with a machete
1 male gets throwing stars to the back
1 female had her neck garroted open
1 male had his head kicked apart
2 males impaled with a pink lawn flamingo
1 female trampled to death
1 male gored on the gut
1 female had her neck bitten open
1 male shot with an arrow
1 female shot on the neck with an arrow
1 female shot on the chest with an arrow
1 male had his face stomped in
1 male axed on the head
1 male had his face repeatedly sliced with a pizza cutter
1 female cooked alive with laser vision
1 male dies from an axed back
1 boy ran over with a car
Total: 19


  1. Not heard of this one before but it seems like a fun time.

    1. It is! Pretty easy-going spoof for a slasher, plus the killer unicorn can get hilariously hammy.

  2. Director here, thanks for checking it out and I'm really glad it clicked with you! Thank you so much.

    1. Hey, no problem! Thank you for making it this fun! 8D