Screamfest 2022 – Four Feature Reviews

Thank goodness horror has its own holiday!  Just in time for some pre-Halloween fun, the undying Los Angeles-based SCREAMFEST HORROR FILM FESTIVAL 2022 (go to www.screamfestla.com for more details!) taking place October 11th – 20th at the TCL Chinese 6 Theatres at the Hollywood and Highland Center is in full axe swing, and the flicks are flying like blood spatter from blunt force impact.  (Gross, but you get the drift!)  We’re continuing our coverage of all things scary on the big screen with four new feature film reviews for those seeking a little something extra in their critical treat bag.  (No razors, promise!)  Check out the encapsulated movie reviews of The Loneliest Boy In the World, Deer Camp ’86, Shaky Shivers, and Matriarch below – it’s “Four Feature Reviews.”


“The Loneliest Boy In the World” – In what can only be described as Bad Boy Bubby meets Weekend At Bernie’s, all through the eyes of David Lynch comes this tale of a sheltered boy who picks the most unusual first friend – and then others – in order to avoid the nuthouse.  (Hint – his BFF has no pulse!)  This one could have gone south fast, but the film’s surprisingly affable feel, humor, and moving moments, along with a solid turn by lead Max Harwood, make it lonely and likable.

“Deer Camp ‘86” – Bits of Surviving the Game, Predator, and all with some 80’s machismo cheddar humor thrown in for good measure, Deer Camp ’86 about hunters who become the hunted is a pretty decent horror/action outing.  Nothing too deep (the characters here, from the tough war veteran to the soulful pretty boy, are most assuredly 80’s cardboard cutouts) but still poignant and surprising where it counts (the origins of the nefarious you won’t see coming), the film manages to combine equal parts humor and mayhem to make for an entertaining night by the campfire.

“Shaky Shivers” – The Fast & Furious franchise’s own Han himself, Sung Kang, makes his directorial debut with this lightly comedic horror flick about two female friends who end up knee-deep in everything from monsters to spells and even brains.  A sort of Booksmart light for the blood and gore crowd, the leads feel very similar in character to Olivia Wilde’s fast-talking twosome, but sadly just don’t have the chemistry together to match their individual glowing personalities.  (Minus Jimmy Bellinger whose animated Eric steals every scene he’s in!)  So while Kang’s future as a filmmaker is still shaky, his first attempt, thankfully, isn’t DOA.

“Matriarch” – While the overall premise – a troubled big city gal goes back to her roots via a secluded English Village and discovers some pretty damn dark secrets involving her mom and the townsfolk – is engaging enough, the execution of Matriarch is its biggest weakness.  So slow and seemingly mundane is the film’s build-up that by the time any evil rears its ugly head, it’s a case of too little, too late.  Not to mention that the film’s lead character is purposefully unlikeable, making audience relatability and any investment in her well-being moot.  So even though this outing ends better than it begins, Matriarch is one movie mother you probably shouldn’t follow.

Stay tuned for even more from Screamfest Horror Film Festival 2022, and as always, simply go to www.screamfestla.com if you want to get your cinema scare on – be slaying ya!


I'm a passionate and opinionated film critic/movie journalist with over 20 years of experience in writing about film - now exclusively for WhySoBlu.com. Previous sites include nine years at Starpulse.com where I created Forgotten Friday Flick back in 2011, before that as Senior Entertainment Editor for The213.net and 213 Magazine, as well as a staff writer for JoBlo.com. My other love is doing cool events for the regular guy with my company Flicks For Fans alongside my friend, partner and Joblo.com writer James "Jimmy O" Oster. Check us out at www.Facebook.com/FlicksForFans.

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