November 21, 2023

If You Liked That, You’ll Love This: Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon (2006)

Just like the “Because You Watched…” lane that pops up on your favorite streaming service, Now Playing Podcast wants to help you find the perfect companion flicks. Each week, contributor Chris Bravo brings you fresh recommends that tie in with one of our reviews.

Thanksgiving was a throwback to the slasher films of yore. Plentiful, gory kills, a whodunit mystery, and naive teenagers fleshing out the cast. Plus, nothing can top the turkey-basting, dinner slaying, can it? And if you’re a slasher fan who enjoyed the homages to the best slasher films, then I have another movie that you should check out: Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon.

Half mockumentary, half slasher, Behind the Mask tells the story of masked serial killer Leslie Vernon. In the same vein as Jason, Freddy, and Michael, Leslie breaks down for the documentary crew following him around just how he goes about choosing his “survivor girl”, how he prepares his killing grounds, how he stalks the victim leading up to the momentous night, and how he ultimately lives to kill another day. Slasher fans should revel in the callbacks to all of the best horror films from the 80s, referencing them as if they all occurred in the same universe (could you imagine?).

The budget is small, and you can sense that in the gore and special effects. And a lot of the teenagers are not great performers (but that’s to be expected, right?). But there is obvious love and passion for slashers, and hopefully, that enthusiasm will infect you, too. Also, look out for those cameos. They’re sure to delight you.

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