A group of teens take a small charter boat to an isolated island for one last party and to say their goodbyes before college. They have no idea that a convicted serial killer has escaped from the Maximum Security Prisons Death Row, taking cover on the very same island. With no working cell phones, no weapons and no way off the island, they must fight to survive as the Butcher picks them off one by one.
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While this is a micro-budget slasher flick with the typical problems therein (e.g. sound) it’s competently made and delivers the goods for what it is. Some thought was actually put into the script as the likable main characters are effectively fleshed-out. The acting ain’t bad either, at least for obscure no-names. There are a few fetching nubile females and you can’t beat the North Carolina coastal cinematography. If you like the Friday the 13th flicks and can handle no-budget independent productions “Butchered” is worth checking out.
The film runs 71 minutes and was shot in Wilmington, North Carolina, and nearby Carolina Beach State Park. The script was written by Shaun O'Rourke, Sheila Brothers & Roxanne Marchand.
Once the credits are over, so is the clever stuff. The acting goes down hill as a group of kids who seem at odds with each other half the time,head off to an island for the weekend. As they pull away from the shore and get about 10 feet out they lose the proverbial phone reception, although the one boy does have a radio so he can contact his brother in an emergency.
This is no house on the island as they camp out in two man/woman tents. In a serious breach of slasher etiquette the killer (D.J. Naylor) doesn't wait until nightfall until he selects his first victim. The slasher, like all good slashers can meander faster than any scared teen can sprint. The island killings, which should have been slow and deliberate with good spacing between them was not. He doesn't strip and torture his victims like he did during the opening credits. Instead they opted to fill their 90 minutes excessively building the character of Dylan and the issues with his family, which didn't play much into slasher aspect of the film.
Parental guide: sex, f-bombs, blood, gore, nudity
The acting is the quality you would expect in a low-budget flick like this, like I stated before some actors give a better performance than others. character development is sort of weak, often creating disconnected and unconvincing performances. Still there are moments when the acting and dramatic character interactions pick-up and deliver, giving us some suspense and enough connection to move the story along.
As for the special effects and sound effects in “Butchered” I am split on both. The music and instrumental created the desired effect that Stewart was aiming for, my issue is I felt it was hokey, white-washed and too dang sugary. Plus the timing for these elements coming in to the scenes, guiding the feeling of the story, often seemed “over produced” and a bit too clichéd. The blood and visceral elements are practical effects. They are limited with most deaths and brutality implied, but enough shows to create a nice effect. The killer is a menacing monster guy with that unerving stoic brutality
The only things that save it from being a one star movie is a little t & a and some cheesy, sometimes funny, humor early on. It also must be noted that Butchered only runs 71 minutes, 67 minutes not counting closing credits. And you'd expect a movie that short to be a non-stop, fast paced flick. Unfortunately, that's not the case. Butchered is full of filler and exposition. And if you haven't already guessed, it's one of the worst slashers I've seen along with Ripper and Barricade.
This is a terrible movie. The plot, if you can even say it has one, is so hackneyed and clichéd it's hard to believe this movie was made in 2010. The acting is not great, but I've seen much worse. The directing is paint-by-numbers. Butchered is barely over an hour long but drags on because it's so boring. The killer has no personality and only the barest back story. The actual murders are beyond dull, many of them even happen off screen. Except for some nudity and profanity this could be rated G.