Coulrophobia. I can say that I somewhat suffer from it. And no, it’s not a fear of mayonnaise (although that is a crippling fear for me). Coulrophobia is the fear of clowns. It’s not uncommon. And with the triumphant return of Pennywise the Clown last year in the IT remake, clowns are even more the rage now. But while Pennywise relies vocally to get his point across, my good friend Art the Clown from the new throwback gore-fest Terrifier relies heavy on facial expressions and sawing bodies in half to get HIS across.
Now for all of you Art the Clown purists out there, you will remember that he first made his appearance in the 2013 anthology film called All Hallows’ Eve – which was written and directed by Damien Leone. Now we fast forward a few years later and Art the Clown has his own full-feature starring role! Terrifier is based on a short of the same name, and harkens back to the good ol’ retro horror days with gritty over-the-top gore and a synthy soundtrack. Now let’s get into the plot of this sucker!
Art the Clown kills a lot of people in gruesome, nasty, and enjoyable ways.
Yeah, that’s pretty much it. Not that it’s a fault for the movie, but the plot is fairly non-existent (other than a reveal at the very end that ties into something towards the beginning). You’re not watching Terrifier for the plot. You’re watching Terrifier for the mesmerizing and delightfully demented performance by David Howard Thornton as Art the Clown! Barely uttering a word, Thornton steals every scene he’s in (I mean, how could he not) doing his best murderous mime impersonation. Kudos to director/writer Damien Leone for stylistically capturing feel of a horror-themed smut film and putting on the screen for all to enjoy and cheer for.
Now let’s talk about the gore. Fuck that CGI crap, right? Terrifier goes full-on practical effects, baby! Want to see a severed head get turned into a jack-o’-lantern? You got it! Want to see a hot fully nude woman get sawed in half from her nether regions all the way to her scalp? Sure thing! It’s impressive. And if you add the gore with Art the Clown’s performance, then you can’t help but to grin. Considering I grew up on 80’s horror, Terrifier easily gave me a horror boner.
Ok. So Terrifier won’t be for everyone. If you’re looking for a mesmerizing plot, you won’t find it here. If you’re looking for a killer clown that smears his own feces and urine on a bathroom wall, then chops up people for fun – then you have hit the jackpot. Turn your brain off and enjoy the carnage. There’s too much serious shit going on in the world right now anyway. Long live, Art the Clown!
(4 Out Of 5)