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Friday, June 13, 2008

DVD Review: Attitude For Destruction

Attitude For Destruction
2008 MVD Visual
Ray Van Horn, Jr.



Ahh, the ever-continuing quest to create the perfect heavy metal horror movie... Trick Or Treat, Black Roses, Rock and Roll Nightmare, the hit list just keeps on rolling. We'll give Trick Or Treat its due for being rock solid for the first 45 minutes or so before dipping into guilty pleasure schlock, but really, if you see a horror film called Attitude For Destruction and flip the case over to see an Axl Rose impersonator atop a cluster of cheeky gore still shots and you're still going to watch at that point, then caveat emptor, my friends...

Granted, Ford Austin's Attitude For Destruction doesn't attempt one iota at seriousness. There's more camp to this ridiculous Z movie than a row of bunkhouses bearing Native American tribe names. The fact Austin creates a mockery of Guns 'n Roses in his cluttery horror film Attitude For Destruction shows chutzpah as it does some admittedly decent splatter effects, but in the same breath, Austin's film falls somewhere between the lowbrow grossout geekery of Bill Zebub's films (Kill the Scream Queen, The Crucifier, Dolla Morte) and Jerry Silva's low budget laugh 'n slash Sleepaway Camp sequels. Take it to heart when reading the scrawl line "Rock 'n Roll, Blood, Guts and Sluts" at the bottom of the DVD artwork, becaues Austin is plying for no one's attention but a cult audience addicted to chum bucket horror and heavy metal, the same lot who could be depended upon in the eighties for cross-marketing purposes.

Outlining the very base plot of Attitude For Destruction, a Guns 'n Roses sorta tribute band called Hollywood Roses (an actual band on the circuit, believe it or not) comes to a crossroads when their gruff and pissy Axl Rose-cloned frontman Drake (Colby Veil, also real-life vocalist for Hollywood Roses and Dopesnake) tries to undermine a record deal, which seals his own fate when the label reps (Jed Rowen of Saw Blade and Witch Sabbath and Bloodmask's AnnMarie Lynn Gracey) threaten to renege their offer if Hollywood Roses doesn't eject Drake from the band.

Naturally this doesn't sit well with Drake, who has a shit fit that prompts the rest of the band to kill him and dispatch his body behind their rehearsal studio. Drake's girlfriend (Laura Lyon) latches onto the remaining members of the band as their liason and manager, but unbeknownst to the guys and Rowen and Gracey, Lyon has made a pact with Satan and serves up human sacrifices in order to generate necronomicon-like power to resurrect Drake into zombified action. One-by-one everyone falls in nutjob grue fashion as Lyon seduces new Hollywood Roses vocalist Monte Hunter before springing her trap utilzing her revived tearing and chomping beau.

Attitude For Destruction is just wrong on many levels, be it the nude sacrifice scene set to a lumbering Goth band (which gets whimsically snuffed in the finale) in the film's opening or Lyons' cannibal dwarf buddy (Mighty Mike Murga) hungrily waiting for his offal serving. Bearing no pretentions about its cement-headed cause, Appetite For Destruction is underground horror for catered tastes. At the very least, Ford Austin offers a chuckle-filled script in which the real Axl Rose and Slash ought to be laughing at their L.A. plunged and flushed former selves, much less the impact Guns 'n Roses has left upon a rock society that has crazily enough made room for farcical trash horror.

Rating: **1/2

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