Review of "DeadTectives” by The Headless Critic
DeadTectives – 2019
Production by: Dark Factory Entertainment, Exit Strategy Productions, BondIt Media Capital, Little Maniac Entertainment, Bad Idea
Distribution by: Shudder
“A demon hell house is how the world describes tonight’s location, where a grisly murder-suicide has raised many unanswered questions. About tonight’s season finale, we’re going to hell and I mean really, really hell to solve them all.”
Deadtectives is a fledgling television show following a group of serious paranormal investigators determined to prove the afterlife is real. The only problem is after five season they’ve realized ghost aren’t real and have resorted to spicing things up to increase their ratings. With their series on the verge of cancellation show executive Konrad (Cris Rice) has hired a new producer Abril (Martha Higareda) and fake prop guy Bob (Mark Riley) to take this fake reality show into the most haunted casa in all of haunted Mexico. Now host and team leader Sam Whitner (Chris Geere), his lovely wife and show producer Kate (Tina Ivlev), tech guy and investigator Lloyd (David Newman) and investigator and Mexican who pretends not to be Mexican Javier (José María de Tavira) have to “explode every demon from that evil hell casa” as their fake paranormal investigation show becomes all too real. Ghost busting is for the beat cops, when you have a supernatural mystery you need solved call the Deadtectives.
From a longtime writer of The Soup Tony West, you’ll get exactly what you expect from a horror film combining the dead with detectives, a lot of quick dialogue and goofy comedy. In the comical horror stylings of Dead Heat, House and The Frighteners, a group of television paranormal investigators who have long since faked their findings enter a real haunted house for the first time. As Deadtectives show host Sam Whitner proclaims for the cameras, “Evil spirits head my warning, you will be exercised tonight!” The spirits of this hell house respond. Not believing in ghosts Sam asks, “Is that all you got? You’ll have to kill us to stop us.” The ghosts take his words to their ghostly hearts. A bumbling group Scooby-Doo their way through an unmasking of the ghosts they thought never existed to find out not only do ghost exist but evil spirits can be deadly.
Acting is fittingly over-the-top with well-defined stereotypical characters that work within the films satire setting. The characters are enjoyable; the comedy is just a little too campy for my comedic tastes. Those who like campy comedies will get a modern day The Ghost and Mr. Chicken that’s more reliant on a well-rounded ensemble cast than the brilliance of Don Knotts that I’m sure they will love. In one of my favorite parts of the film I see promise in the ending with a potentially action packed, comedy, Ghost Busters style follow-up. I would be interested in that ghost busting team but until first time feature writer and director Tony West summons up a sequel, for now it’s “another case solved.”
Available July 19th only on Shudder
2 out of 5 Headless Critics