Totally Killer

Totally Killer
Totally Killer
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Blumhouse of late has been delivering some intriguing and super entertaining slasher movies that were just like nothing seen in the subgenre before. Films such as Happy Death Day and Freaky received much critical acclaim for both films’ innovations, performances and dynamism. And now, Totally Killer, a time travel slasher movie set in the 80’s is continuing Blumhouse’s strong line of exceptional slasher flicks on Prime Video.

In case you liked either Happy Day Death or The Belko Experiment, Get Out or even better Freaky which was written by the same person then Totally Killer will certainly give you that nostalgic kind of feel to it if you are a fan of fun vibrant slasher movies. This horror-comedy has an interesting plot with lots of funny jokes and clever writing. The cast is phenomenal making the film highly enjoyable even more than it already was. One could say that Totally Killer is Halloween meets Back to the Future; what a big compliment!

However much fun Totally Killer may be and however big its eventual fan base becomes though, it does have some similar issues as those faced by other slasher films produced by Blumhouse. It is plain to see that this type of film keeps struggling with one thing – inability to create a memorable villain unlike Michael Myers, Jason Voorhees,Ghostface or Freddy Krueger among others who all became unforgettable pop culture icons over time. Similarly, neither kills nor deaths themselves stand out in any way whatsoever.

35 years later after three 16-year-old teenagers were horrifically murdered on Halloween night; an infamous killer called The Sweet 16 Murderer comes back at night every October 31st year since then. Jamie (Kiernan Shipka from Wildflower) ends up being the next target after her mother (Julie Bowen) gets killed off by him Amelia (Kelcey Mawema), her best friend builds a time machine out of an old photo booth that was designed and conceptualized by her mother in order to send Jamie back to 1987 and stop the Sweet 16 Killer from going on further killing spree, then to somehow avoid her mother’s death.

When the killer eventually finds Jamie he attacks but she manages to fend him off for a short while before they both get trapped in that time machine with Jamie being sent backwards back ro 1987 where she will have yet another confrontation with the serial killer trying to save the lives of three teenagers who were killed at this time. In order for Jamie to return home, she must repair the time machine through any means necessary even if it means having to work with her teenage mother in bringing down their tormentor.

2023 has been a great year for slashers. There were a number of impressive slasher movies by Totally Killer, including Scream VI-a successful sequel- The Blackening which was quite funny, Slotherhouse (which is just ridiculous), and many others. It is such an amazing movie; it’s fun, has good mystery plot, lots of humors and best of all: one hell-of-a-cast featuring Kiernan Shipka along with Julie Bowen Olivia Holt Lochlyn Munro and Randall Park among others.

Happy Death Day movies are reminiscent of a time travel slasher film, but that was more focused on cyclical Groundhog Day type of time warp rather than the traditional linear time travel feature in Totally Killer with its more Back to the Future style. Although one cannot deny that such sci-fi gimmick and machine aspects are somewhat disconcerting since they appear out of nowhere; still, due to Jaime’s best friend constructing a time machine just for sending Jaime back to change her mum’s death scene, it is hard not to forgive this. It is silly, yet it works.

As is often the case with time travel movies, Totally Killer is packed full of pop culture references. Back to the Future and Scream are repeatedly mentioned throughout the movie as well as many Molly Ringwald references ranging from characters dressing up like her most iconic roles or having Sweet 16 killer referred to as The Sweet 16 Killer. Marvel’s Avengers: Endgame also gets some airtime in an aside.

Through its ’80s backdrop Totally Killer allowed for some fun anecdotes related to time travel. First, teenage Lauren (Troy Leigh-Anne Johnson) who will become Amelia’s mother in the future thinks Jamie’s smartphone is a time machine. Moreover, there was a lot wrong with the ’80s when it comes to issues such as sexism and racism which are made fun of constantly throughout the film. In 1987 their mascot appears differently when compared with what it looks like today; while only an indigenous person represents 1987 Red Devils’ mascot, by now this figure has been replaced by devil imagery because Vernon Red Devils defines their name. Similarly pay attention detail when you see a minor male character wearing a T-shirt saying FBI: Female Body Inspector — Jamie has something to say about that one. Now girl go ahead

Totally Killer could easily be described as auto-referential work. The movie contains several pop culture references already discussed earlier and other time travel movies that the movie itself tries to make fun of. In this regard, Randall Park states that he hates time travel films as they don’t make sense which is also true about Totally Killer. Luckily, the filmmakers never try to explain too much how their logic works.

Totally Killer is a very enjoyable movie; but it does have its flaws. A slasher film like this should have some inventive and memorable kills, but for some reason it doesn’t. The moments leading up to the deaths are kind of cool (or at least strange), as many characters seem to know karate and put up a great fight against the Sweet 16 Killer. Yet, all that ends up in disappointment.

The antagonist in this film, The Sweet 16 Killer is not particularly memorable and will likely never become a Halloween costume for anyone ever really soon – at least not one that is very popular! Can you tell us who was the killer from Freaky or Happy Death Day or any other Blumhouse’s movie? No? Well, that’s sort of an issue right there. They are all vague yet unimpressive which continues in Totally Killer despite the opportunities given to such murderers in order to stand out from among countless faceless horror villains around them. But whatever it’s so hilarious with amazing characters and good base ideas

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