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AICN Intern Muldoon checks out the Pakistani Zombie Horror Film, HELL'S GROUND, at Fantastic Fest!!!

Hey folks, Harry here with AICN Intern, Muldoon and his look at the Pakistani Horror film... HELL'S GROUND. My understanding is the film is banned in its native land - but it's playing on our screens at Fantastic Fest... and seriously - we've got Russian Fantasy Epics, French/Iranian Animation, Chilean Martial Arts Superhero flicks... why the fuck not have a Pakistani Horror film? I mean, what would that be like? Well wonder no more, seems Muldoon has the answer and the answer is... KICK ASS! Here ya go...

Holy Shit. First off – this movie is pure gold. The line was way out the building for the super secret deluxe ultimate AICN screening of something and so instead of trying to get in, I said “Fuck it, I’m watching that Pakistani Horror Flick.” I went in to this thing with no clue what it was about, just as I try to do with most movies that play here at the Fest, so I wasn’t expecting some 20,000 dollar slasher/zombie/crazy people/stoner kind of flick. Most “Indies” that play at these fests are in the low millions… fuck that. The Pakistani director Omar Ali Khan and the guy who owns Mondo Macabre, Pete Tombs, deliver one of the most badass flicks of the year. I know, you’re going “calm the fuck down kid, how could a 20,000 dollar Pakistani zombie movie with no tits really be that amazing?” First off, this is the first Pakistani movie I’ve ever seen and I hope to see a shit ton more horror coming out of that place, because damn… It starts out with a group of teens heading to a rock concert. They lie to their parents, sneak some sexy clothes, get some weed, and hit the road in a toyota decked out with a painting of a chick getting hacked in half with an axe on the side… yeah. The whole time these kids are slipping in and out of English, so half of any given sentence would be subtitled, then bam it’s gone and then right back again a few lines later. Clearly the creators of this thing have seen every slasher/horror film from the eighties and specifically went out of their way to provide every cliché in the book of what not to do in a slasher movie, minus the boobs of course. They’ve got all the bases covered with an uptight virgin, a party dude, and a total bitch chick. There’s some talk of how the river water is polluted and people drinking from it start to mutate or something like that… The trouble starts when our groups of party animals decide to take a short cut and try to make it to the concert a little earlier. Anyone can tell you that that’s rule number one in a horror flick, if not rules number 2 and 3 as well. The group swings by this shady stand where these creepy old people sell some sort of stoner candy, like balls of cannabis or something along those lines, when the toothless old cashier warns the virgin of the group not to go down that road and to stay out of the woods. Of course she doesn’t mention that to any of her friends and they go on there way only to pull over after one guy needs to puke after that magical stoner candy upsets his stomach. Low and behold a freak monster zombie kid runs out and takes a chunk out of the guy’s leg as he’s blowing chunks into the river. They all freak out, more zombie things appear and go ape shit on the stoners and end up snatching one of them for lunch. They speed off and pick up some random medicine man who, after being in their van for five seconds, tells them he’s going to suck all of their blood and then whips out a decapitated head from his bag. They pull over and toss his ass out, but eventually run out of gas and oddly enough their cell phones stop working, so they pull over again… As if the movie isn’t retardedly bizarre enough, a random killer in a white burqa pops out and starts chasing them around. Unlike every other slasher, the guy didn’t carry a massive knife, fuck that he had a giant mace that he would swing around while running through the inconsistently fog filled forest after these people. Basically the thing ends with everyone dead, except the virgin who decides to stand up for herself and take revenge by tossing together a nifty weapon from a wooden stick and some barbed wire (cough* HIGH TENSION). She kills the dude and the movie’s over. Don’t get me wrong, this movie is no CHAINSAW MASSACRE or NIGHT OF THE LVING DEAD and for the most part it’s retarded and predictable, but it’s got something so incredibly captivating about it that it has it’s own place in the line of truly great indie horror flicks, which had been killed off by movies like CAPTIVITY and remake’s like HALLOWEEN. Go see this thing. If anything just watch it for the random comic book freeze frames that seem to pop up whenever. This is the most fun flick you will see, and definitely one of the highlights of this years Fantastic Fest, fitting right up there with SPIRAL and THE END OF THE LINE, which both kick an insane amount of ass themselves. -Muldoon
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