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FEARNET Movie Review: 'GallowWalkers'

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gallowwalkersLike most horror movie fans with a spare 90 minutes would be, I found myself slightly intrigued by the new VOD title called GallowWalkers. First off, that's one awful title. "GallowWalkers." Already I'm amused. Then we realize it's one of those rarest of treats: a horror / western combo. Amusement level rising. Upon even closer inspection (aka I read the synopsis) it sure seems like GallowWalkers is a western / horror / Blade wannabe, and yes, GallowWalkers does star Wesley "Blade" Snipes.

Obviously one is not expecting a master class in genre filmmaking from a film like this. At best a viewer can hope for a simple story, a few colorful characters, a small batch of action, and perhaps some worthwhile moments of horror-type-stuff. At worst... we get movies like GallowWalkers. It would take a team of veteran film critics working around the clock to catalog all the things that are wrong with this outrageously goofy movie, but for the sake of sanity, let's just keep it to the things that make the flick impossible to enjoy.

A. It makes no freaking sense whatsoever. Apparently Snipes plays a cursed gunslinger whose victims refuse to stay dead, which leads to a bunch of silly villains running around the old west looking a lot like Riff Raff from Rocky Horror. Tossed randomly into this woefully edited junk heap are subplots about A) the gunslinger's now-deceased whore of a mama, B) a dopey sidekick who shoots really well but serves no real purpose in the story, and C) a boss level ghoul bastard who wants the gunslinger's secrets because his son never managed to come back from the dead.

There are probably four or five more C-grade subplots and speeches I'm forgetting, but suffice to say that in addition to being edited in a blender, GallowWalkers seems to have been written on LSD. Rare is the genre flick that contains this many "howlers," but GallowWalkers is funnier by accident than Adam Sandler is on purpose. The actors look sadly confused beneath their inexplicably fake-looking blonde wigs, the "plot" is a dreary morass of convoluted flashbacks and indecipherable character exchanges, and (aside from a small dose of decent cinematography) the action scenes are beyond all comprehension.

It's clear that Wesley Snipes has become sort of a "straight to video / VOD" action hero, and it's painfully obvious that the producers of GallowWalkers were trying their best to copy the Blade formula, but that's really no excuse for a film this sloppy, silly, and tonally deficient. If you're like me and you simply have to see what a Wesley Snipes horror western looks like, I respect that. Just don't expect a very good flick -- and be sure to have some recreational substances nearby.

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