Happy Halloween

This one's worth skipping.

This one’s worth skipping.

Ooh!

Ooh!

It's not very, um... lulzy.

It’s not very, um… lulzy.

Well, it’s finally Halloween and we have time for one more horror film, so I have decided to conclude this year’s collection of Halloween reviews by looking at a major stinker. That stinker is a movie simply called Smiley, starring – get this – none other than Shane Dawson! Yeah. Remember in my review of Fred where I absolutely lamented the notion that so-called YouTube “celebrities” seem to be taking over Hollywood? Apparently I wasn’t exaggerating.

Let’s ignore that, though. Let’s not laugh at the fact that these guys chose a moderately unfunny YouTube v-logger to be one of the leads in their slasher movie. Let’s instead laugh at what the slasher movie itself is supposedly trying to scare its viewers with. What’s the primary scare in Smiley, you ask? Okay, are you ready? Here we go – It’s emoticons and Internet slang. Yes. Cower.

To elaborate, the plot revolves around a serial killer known simply as Smiley, so called because of how he has mutilated his own face by stitching his eyes shut and carving the rest of it into a smiley face, even though it actually looks like he’s wearing a vaguely skin-like mask. The way you summon this blood-thirsty abomination is to write “I Did It For The Lulz” three times into a ChatRoulette-like website, at which point your chat partner will promptly get murdered by this guy. The phrase “I Did It For The Lulz” also appears on several walls in the film, written in in blood in what I guess is a pretty creepy font or something. Ah yes, 9GAG literacy. A classic element of genuine horror.

The main characters are college student Ashley (Caitlin Gerard) and her new friends Proxy (Melanie Papalia), Zane (Andrew James Allen), Binder (Dawson) and Mark, who’s played by – I’m really not kidding here – Toby Turner. Tobuscus. Tobuscus is in this film, reassuring that I will never be able to make jokes about laughable casting choices ever again, becuase the stupid shit I say for the sake of ironic satire always turn out to be things that are already happening. What are these people doing in the same film as Keith David? What is happening?

Fear is only the beginning.

Fear is only the beginning.

These youngsters neverheless encounter Smiley soon enough. Plenty of supposed scariness ensues and all of it culminates in a twist ending so stupid that it would make M. Night Shyamalan jealous that he didn’t think of it first. No, I won’t reveal it, but let’s just say that supporters of Anonymous are sure to be squeeing with glee when it happens. They might even get a case of the lulz, if you will. (Ugh, now you got me started too.)

Apart from being based around such a massively ludicrous concept and having such bizarre casting, there honestly isn’t anything remarkable about Smiley, neither in a good nor a bad way. It’s pretty dull in its scares, not very intense in its violence, uninteresting in its acting, and surprisingly generic and unoriginal for having such a ridiculous premise at the core. Overall it’s just a poorly made film that is more absurd to describe than it is to actually watch.

And just to add icing to the cake, there are already rumors of a there being sequel to Smiley in the works. In fact, Andrew James Allen confirmed it as of a recent interview. Let me guess? The sequel is going to star PewDiePie, the killer is going to have one of those amazingly stupid-looking cat-emoticons carved into its Slenderman-esque countenance and he will only appear when someone watches shitty gaming videos on YouTube? Yeah, that sounds about right. Truly Hollywood creativity has reached its peak, hasn’t it?

Oh well, either way I hope that you’ve all had a terrific Halloween, that you’ve eaten lots of caries-inducing foods and that you won’t be attacked by homicidal emoticons in the middle of the night. Happy Halloween once again!

1.5/5 whatever

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