David Arquette’s ‘Tripper’ Puts a New Face on Horror

Recently we at Film School Rejects had the opportunity to sit with David Arquette and talk about his new film, The Tripper. For any horror fan, the film looks like gold, the right ingredients are there. The film opens on April 20th and promises that “On 4.20, Hippie Blood Will Trickle Down.” In a horror film containing drugged out hippies at a rock concert, gratuitous nudity and blood, what else could a fan ask for?

Our own Robert Fure saw an early screening of the film and gave a fantastic review. Robert called it a “chopfest” that “channeled the feel of the great 1980’s slashers.” The film stars Tom Jane, Jaime King, Lukas Haas, Jason Mewes, Paul Reubens and none other than David Arquette and wife Courtney Cox. With a cast like this and a tagline about dead hippies on 4.20, how can you not get excited about this film?

David synopsized the film by calling a movie about “a group of drugged out hippies that go to an outdoor music festival in The Redwood Forest, and they get attacked and stalked by a killer who is obsessed with Ronald Reagan…and has a killer dog named Nancy.” David recalled his own experience at a concert like the one in the film, and cited this as his inspiration. “I was sitting there at this concert called Reggae Rising…and it had just gotten dark, and I was looking out and a little wasted and thought ‘man it would be crazy if a killer came out of those woods and started hacking all these hippies up.'”

We had to ask, why Ronald Reagan? David told us about a time when he saw a Ronald Reagan mask and thought to himself “Whoa, that is really creepy looking.” But, Reagan’s scary face wasn’t Davids only reason for choosing Mr. President as the serial killer’s guise. “The true leaders of our world, the people in power that sign pieces of paper that allow people to go blow each other’s brains out, that to me is where the true psychopaths are. They are the true killers, and if they continue to…use violence as the solution to our problems then they can’t really complain when people are outside blowing each other’s brains out.”

When asked if David would like people to take away a political message from the film, he didn’t want the film to be taken too seriously. “All in all, it’s good slasher fun and a lot of gore…I tried to get some scares in there…It is fun and it is a throwback to the 70’s films.” Ultimately, we has to ask the question that any true horror fan would ask. What about nudity? David spoke about the range of tolerance with a horror film and said “You can exploit sex, violence and rock n’ roll and drugs more than you can in any other format.”

Sadly, exploiting sex and violence isn’t always fun and games as we came to find out. “It is such an awkward conversation. 0 As if breasts weren’t enough, David said the most uncomfortable thing to ask would be “do you mind simulating sex?” On behalf of everyone in the world, I’d like to thank David for his skill in convincing actresses to show their breasts. You can’t have a horror film with out them.

When talking with a horror film director, it’s always fun to ask what their favorite horror films are. It wasn’t surprising to hear about films like Halloween, The Shining, The Omen and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. It’s always depressing to hear everyone’s favorite horror films are from 20+ years ago. When asked why the genre is failing, David’s thoughts were “there is alot of torture going on now. That’s cool for some people, but it seems like it’s the whole sort of thing right now.” It’s nice to see that films like The Tripper aren’t afraid to get down and dirty, and shed a little blood vintage style.

One question I had to ask David, was concerning the double edged sword that is the current genre of horror. While it may be acceptable to watch the gooey eye of a recently tortured girl being cut off with a pair of rusty scissors, the horror community has increased their standards. What I mean is, why can’t kids die in horror films anymore? Specifically citing the new and original films When a Stranger Calls, the kids die in one film but not the other. When I asked David how he felt about this, he said “I could kill the kids, I think it’s scarier.”

After our site already gave The Tripper an A grade, and sitting and speaking with the director, I know that I can’t wait for the film. It’s nice to see that a director knows where the genre started, and where it is going. A film that has something serious to say but doesn’t take itself too seriously, The Tripper looks to be a slashing good time at the movies. Move over, Jason. Look out, Freddie. Heeere’s Ronnie!

The Tipper opens in select cities on 4/20. Check out the film’s official MySpace Profile by clicking on Mr. Arquette below:

You can also catch more of the FSR interview with David Arquette Friday morning on Fat Guys at the Movies.