Jesse T. Cook, Director
If you are a horror fan and grew up watching Saturday morning professional wrestling, then this movie is an indie wet dream. Monster Brawl is a death match tournament pitting classic monsters against one another with all of the flair of televised professional wrestling. Some of the monsters/wrestlers have managers, with the occasional interference with a folding chair, a pipe, and a hatchet … ya know, standard stuff. Jesse Cook has assembled monsters and mythic creatures from around the world. Imagine Cyclops vs a witch, the mummy vs a she-vampire, a werewolf vs a swamp creature, and Frankenstein’s monster vs a zombie. Add in a brilliant cast that includes Lance Henricksen (narrator), Dave Foley and Jimmy Heart (the Mouth from the South), Monster Brawl brings full on in-the-ring action with and angry ensemble of battling beasts. (Forgive the attempt at sounding like a wrestling promoter … thought it seemed appropriate).
The monsters are introduced with backstory vignettes, each with high production value and great locations. The make-up and costuming is top-notch. Admittedly, the Cyclops and the swamp creature were a little campy; but, they brought a Roger Corman-esque quality that seemed to fit. Monster Brawl is a fun movie. It takes itself serious enough to bring you into the story; then heaps on all the cheese of classic WWF … WWE … TNA (pick your poison) – even giving us some great Mortal Combat moments with narrative interjections … FATALITY!
I will say that some of the acting seemed a little flat (Foley didn’t quite bring his “A-game”) and a lot of the dialogue was sophomoric … but, it’s professional wrestling! The physical performances were strong, however. I was always amazed how professional wrestlers could deliver so much brutal punishment without actually injuring each other - add tons of make-up and restrictive costumes … impressive. Monster Brawl is now available at Amazon.com.
Jason Hignite-HorrorHound Magazine