Monday, April 25, 2016

Review of Film Short: Attack of the Killer Chickens

Text © Richard Gary / Indie Horror Films, 2016
Images from the Internet

Attack of the Killer Chickens
Written and directed by Genoveva Rossi
Cluck, Cluck Productions / Impersonation Films
6:23 minutes, 2015

There is a lesson to be learned from the likes of Gilligan’s Island and Welcome Back Kotter, and it is simply this: if you’re going to go silly, go mad, batshit silly. Happily, Genoveva Rossi and crew have taken that to heart in Rossi’s first directorial outing. The story, spoofing the Planet of the Apes franchise from what I gather from the catch phrase (“It’s the dawn of a new age…a chicken age…”), but it’s more Hens from Space as cheesy and fun chicken puppets start to attack humans in a plot to take over the world. Introduced to a couple (Rossi and Pamela Martin) at the opening, they – and we – come to learn through a hyperactive newscast that chickens, who outnumber humans on Earth, are rising up to avenge their murdered fowl sisters (and brothers). They are becoming more human-like, in an Animal Farm kind of way, thanks to a talking (rooster?) leader (also reminds me of a Monty Python’s Flying Circus sketch about an intelligent sheep named Harold).  

Genoveva Rossi and some of her killer chickens
Anyhoo, in its acceptance of its own absurdity, it’s much easier to just take it as it lays (pun intended), and just have fun with it. The puppets are absurd and obvious, the gore is daftly fun, and the mood – especially the scenes with Mr. Hush himself, rock writer Edward X. Young – are especially enjoyably ridiculous. Only thing missing is Graham Chapman’s Colonel coming through and interrupting the action.

There is a history of killer poultry, such as Turkie in ThanksKilling (2009), with a similar level of insanity and puppet fowl, but here it's a bit closer to Night of the Living Dead (1968) mass attacks than a single, possessed gobbler. Turkie was profane, but the chickens in this film are more urbane, if that is a suitable way of putting it.

In case this isn’t clear, I really enjoyed all 6+ minutes of this goofy excursion. I look forward to the deep-voiced Rossi picking up the directorial helm again, if she can find the time through her numerous acting credits, as this is just so entertaining.

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