Thankskilling, as you can probably glean, is a Thanksgiving themed horror film. Why review it in January? Simple. I didn’t have it done in time for Thanksgiving. Also, there are no good holidays in January, so let’s spice it up with some cranberry sauce – drenched in blood! Thankskilling bills itself as “the ultimate low-budget experience” and proudly advertises it’s unrated DVD is as such because they couldn’t afford a rating. All that said, you’ve been properly warned about the budgetary status of the film, so any concern about lighting, special effects, actors, or anything that could have been solved by more money, is something you should abandon before going in. You need to open yourself up to the low budget camp that is to come and you’ll find plenty to laugh about.
This article is being republished for Thanksgiving 2010. You’re welcome.
As for the plot, no matter how long I sat and tried, I don’t think I could sum it up better than the back of the DVD box: a demonic turkey is unleashed…and he’s one fowl-mouthed bastard! Five of our favorite college kids: a JOCK, a GOOD GIRL, a FAT HICK, a SLUT, and a NERD head home for Thanksgiving break, each thankful for the chance of holiday hookups. Obviously then the demonic turkey comes into play and away we go.
A respectable 10 people are killed this holiday season, with two of those kills happening mostly off-screen. A good number, but this isn’t for the gorehounds.
We’re treated to a dead dog and a pile of turkey deuce. There is a gunshot to the head, a head is cut off and tossed around, there is a broken neck, a face is ripped off and worn as a mask (my favorite part, we’ll get to that), our turkey friend bursts through someones chest, a tongue and a heart are ripped out, some stabbings, and a meat thermometer is shot into an ass. Some funny stuff with a few of the kills spilling a decent amount of blood.
The menu promises tits in the first second, though technically there are about 15 seconds of title cards first, but the first actual image is actually of some big ol’ pilgrim titties. We see a bra shot of a hot girl and then there is mostly clothed sex scene. Then the turkey slips in there and nails some ass. Not kidding. It’s as cool as you think.
Don’t fuck with turkeys or they’ll fuck you back with gravy flavored condoms.
Thankskilling is a 70minute low budget feature that’s proud of its nature, something you’ve got to respect. The key to success here, for the filmmaker, was to embrace the ridiculous nature of the movie and the low budget and just go for it. The key to success for the viewer is to come in with the mindset that this is just going to be a fun, funny that takes time to poke fun at the genre we all love.
The Thankskilling theme song is pretty righteous, calling to mind Carpenter’s Halloween theme. It’s used over the menu and a few times throughout the movie and I dig it. The main draw of this movie is the smart-ass Turkey, who takes a page out of Freddy Kreuger’s book by delivering a beakfull of sass and a whole bunch of fuck you. He delivers one-liners like “nice tits, bitch” and “gobble gobble mother fucker” mixed in with some other gems. While the film starts a tad slow, by the end I was fully behind this hand puppet turkey and wished he was on screen gobbling obscenities constantly. There is plenty to laugh it here, with sex jokes and a plethora of fecal humor. Ever wonder why that coffee tastes like shit? Well now you have an answer – someone shit in it. The filmmakers also throw in some cool little animation bits and even a song interlude – serious horror this is not – but a low budget way to kill some time? Definitely. Imagine a terrible SyFy channel movie, but one that was made to be purposefully funny rather than only accidentally funny and you get the idea of how Thankskilling plays out.
My all time favorite scene is one where the turkey answers the door wearing the Sheriff’s face as a mask. Mind you, it’s covered in stitches and on a turkey, but everyone just thinks its the sheriff and talks to him as if nothing is amiss – or should I say afoul? If you can get behind this sort of balls-out ridiculous humor, you’ll find a lot to laugh at in Thankskilling, enough to make it a holiday staple. After all, what other movies can you watch on Thanksgiving that involve someone getting their gut carved out?
While not a perfect film by any means, Thankskilling works overall and succeeds where it wanted, and needed to – in making a ridiculous puppet make people laugh. And killing some bitches. As I mentioned, the film starts a tad slow – I could use more turkey, and sooner. At the end of the flick, we hear the turkey say “Do I smell a sequel, beyotch” and then the card that says “to be continued…in space.” I can honestly say that while I don’t want to see turkey in space, I would like to see another Thankskilling movie, with a bigger budget, more tits, more gore, and more turkey. That’s a lot of requests for more for a flick I did enjoy, but I want to be stuffed with turkey. Err. Well, you know. In summation, Thankskilling is the kind of comedy for horror fans. If you dig on low budget and can get on board with this style of humor, I say give it a chance. In technical DVD terms, the disc is put together well with some cool behind the scenes features, no advertisements/trailers, an extra theme song, a look at how the puppet was made, commentary, and all packaged in a well designed case with slipcover.