Posts Tagged ‘Jordyn Rudolph’

The recent release of Jigsaw proves, I guess, that the whole “torture porn” thing isn’t over with just yet, but earlier in 2017 low-budget writer/director Joshua Shreve beat the latest installment of the Saw franchise out of the gate with his straight-to-streaming (and, I guess, DVD, but for our purposes the fact that it’s available on Amazon Prime is all that really matters) effort Talon Falls — the question is, did he beat its at its own game?

There’s no question that this story about four road-tripping teens (played by Morgan Wiggins, Ryan Rudolph, Jordyn Rudolph, and Brad Bell) who make a pit-stop at a Kentucky roadside “scream park” featuring a plethora of blood, torture, and gore that all seems a little bit too realistic is, in fact, sadistic in the extreme — especially when the burly rednecks who run the joynt kidnap all our protagonists, one by one, and proceed to show ’em how things are really done at this backwoods splatter-show — but there’s a decidedly clinical feel to the whole endeavor that not only reduces the grotesque and (should-be) disturbing to a mere business, but robs it of its its ability to shock, as well.

In other words, no matter how bad things get here — and they do get pretty goddamn bad — it all feels terribly expected.

You name it, we’ve seen it : the animal masks. The hatchets and axes. The makeshift “medical” devices designed to inflict maximum bodily harm. The evil inbred yokels. The fetishistic focus on torment. The free-flowing blood, viscera, and entrails. It’s all shot with surprising professionalism by cinematographer Jeff Steinborn, to be sure, but damn — the gore and torture should be excruciating here, but they’ve got nothing on how excruciatingly predictable the plot is.

I guess that the titular Talon Falls is a real Halloween attraction (the flick was shot there), and that’s cool and all, but that’s about the only thing to set this apart from any of the other “torture porn” flicks that were big business about a decade ago, other than the more-competent-than-usual acting of “final girl” Lyndsey (Wiggins) and the slightly-more-menacing-than-most figure of chief killer Tiny (Tim McCain), who cuts a pretty cool — and suitably silent — figure as he chases people around, trusses ’em up, and all that.

Seriously, though — if you’ve seen House Of 1000 Corpses (and, come on, you know you have) then you’ve seen Talon Falls. In fact, you’ve seen a much better version of Talon Falls. It’s not that Shreve and Co. aren’t trying or anything — clearly they are — but what they’re trying to do is make a movie that’s already been made (and more than once, at that), and just do it cheaper. Serious gorehounds will probably find enough here to keep them interested, and more power to ’em (hey, I’m not one to judge), but for the rest of us? This is one you can safely skip — and in my considered opinion that’s precisely what you should do. The only thing that hurts about this flick is watching it.