Director: Daniel Liatowitsch, David Todd Ocvirk
Screenplay: Daniel Liatowitsch
Starring: Amy Weber, Donny Terranova, Nichole Pelerine
Running Time: 82 min
BBFC Certificate: 18
Kolobos is a late 90s gore soaked slasher which fell under the radar on its release, but now is the time to revisit this “ahead of its time” sticky pile of mashed bodies. The big question is, is all the dicing the imaginings of a deranged mind or the actions of voyeuristic sicko?
A soothing lullaby musical opening gives way to a sombre foreboding composition and the stage is set as a couple find a badly disfigured girl who can only utter the word “Kolobos”. Jumping back in time a few days , the same girl Kyra (Amy Weber) offers to be a in an experimental film and manages to get a lift to the snow covered house of death. As she arrives the other hapless victims start to turn up and get to know each other, but this does not turn into a jolly “Wham” Christmas hit, the direction takes a much darker path with plenty of slicing and dicing. The lambs to the slaughter think that they are partaking in an experimental film, put the only experiments being carried out will be on them.
The others in the group find out that Kyra is on medication for anxiety and start to judge her, which is made worse when they discover her disturbing artwork. Kyra starts to see outlandish visions, including a strangely mutilated face on the television; we are unsure if she’s imaged them or they are tricks being played by a sick voyeur. The house is fitted with cameras to make sure none of the fun is missed, soon the shutters come down, they are locked in and things get bloody…scream you are on camera. Adding to the mayhem a creepy manifestation roams the house leading the victims to wonder what hath god wrought. A deadly game starts to play out, the final bloodbath ensues, the doomed prey is picked off one at a time, and we are left wondering what the hell went on.
Kolobos has been described as Saw meets Suspiria; it’s an uber-gory viewing experience which has received mixed to negative reviews. Interesting cinematography creates an unsettling start with jumping stuttering photography adding to the unease of the movie which is shored up with robust acting to create an adept film. It’s in the vein of the better known “My little Eye” (2002), preceding it by three years and right up your street if you like your meat rare.
Amusing moments include the drive when Kyra is picked up on a normal autumn day, they appear to drive a few moments and suddenly arrive at a snow covered house. The kids spend their time watching horror movies and in Slaughter House Part 3 we are subjected to the comical “fork in the neck death” and best line at tea time is “How about a nice big cup of shut the fuck up”. It’s well acted with gallons of icky blood and annoying kids getting hacked up, oh and by the way keep an eye out for the guest appearance by Linnea Quigley. I enjoyed this one for its deliberate 90s trash style, its ambiguity and that Kolobos is prepared to laugh at itself and the slasher genre.
Kolobos is out on Blu-ray on the 11th March 2019 with Arrow Video, including an impressive assembly of extras including new interviews and image gallery.
The special edition contents contain a brand new 2K restoration from the original negative, original stereo and 5.1 audio options. Audio commentary with co-writers and co-directors Daniel Liatowitsch and David Todd Ocvirk, Real World Massacre: The Making of Kolobos- brand new featurette on The Making-of Kolobos including interviews with Daniel Liatowitsch, David Todd Ocvirk and Co-writer/producer Nne Ebong and Face to Faceless, a brand new interview with “Faceless” actor Ilia Volok. Slice & Dice: The music of Kolobos, a brand new interview with composer William Kidd, Behind the Scenes Image Gallery, Super 8 short film by Daniel Liatowitsch with commentary and last but not least the original trailer. The first pressing only will contain a fully illustrated collector’s booklet with new writing on the film by Phillip Escott.
The disc I reviewed was of nice picture and sound quality with a Kolobos stack of extras for your viewing pleasure, I must admit I enjoyed this lost gem, it’s worth a punt, if just to work out what the heck went off.