January 20, 2013

Quick Review- John Dies at the End (2013)

(aka What Just Happened?)
Release Date: On VOD now, In Theaters Jan. 25th (Limited)
Country: USA.
Written by: Don Coscarelli and David Wong.
Directed by: Don Coscarelli.
Starring: Chase Williamson, Rob Mayes, Paul Giamatti, Clancy Brown and Fabianne Therese and Coscarelli favorite, Angus Scrimm.

Any Horror fan worth their salt knows and loves Don Coscarelli and his work. He's given us the Phantasm Universe, The Beastmaster and Bubba Ho-Tep; his body of work isn't crazy big, but it's most definitely crazy good.

Crazy excellent, even.

When we heard that he was going to be bringing John Dies at the End to the big screen,we were elated. Coscarelli is just brilliant, and he knows how to entertain. He was just what this material needed.

It's not that hard to break down the plot of JDatE, but it is extremely hard to explain it properly without confusing the shit out of you. It's not that you're slow, or that we suck at explaining things, it's just that this movie is so frigging "out there," that we still aren't sure what most of it was about.

David and John are best friends who are able to see into the future, as well as other dimensions. This ability comes from them taking a black liquid drug called Soy Sauce, given to them by a Jamaican named Robert Marley. There's also a dog that can lick people back to life, a hot chick with a missing hand, and a TV psychic, all of whom may or may not be on the sauce.

Soy Sauce Pimpin'.
After David and John get themselves into all sorts of wacky hi-jinks, a Demon called "Shitload" kidnaps everyone and forces them to go through a magic door to another reality, to give their knowledge to a giant squid monster named Korrok, so that it can "cross over" and rule every dimension...

Listen, I've seen the movie and I don't know what in the hell went on, so don't feel bad if you're scratching your head right now.

That's pretty much what we looked like after watching this movie.
Don Coscarelli and his cast made John Dies at the End an enjoyable experience. As goofy and nonsensical as the whole thing was, Coscarelli made it work, using his particular brand of filmmaking to make the ridiculous seem plausible. Enjoyable, even.

As for the cast, they all made me love their characters. They all delivered funny performances without going overboard and becoming ridiculous, and that's no easy feat with the material that they were working with. Paul Giamatti was perfect for this movie.

Then again, Paul Giamatti is perfect for any movie. Dude rocks.
I'm really not a fan of overtly bizarre flicks that seem to exist only to be "daring" and "creative." Movies like Detention or Scott Pilgrim Saves the World annoy me to no end, and are completely lost on me. JDatE feels a lot like those movies, and in any other hands besides Coscarelli's, I really think it would have bugged the hell out of me. I'm glad that it didn't.

Why, Bark Lee, why?!? I hate how they always have to mess with the dog!

Who's a good boy!
Beheadings, exploding heads, exploding meat monsters, people turning into snakes, blood, body parts, bloody body parts, spiked bats, flamethrowers... this movie has it's violent moments. Odd, funny, violent moments.

There are a bunch of creepy naked "Alien" people in this, so if that's your thing, then you're in luck.

A C+ may seem like a bad grade, but trust me, that's a really good one coming from me. I'm not a fan of the absurd at all, but this movie was a lot of fun, and made me push aside my normal predilections and just enjoy the hell out of it. Fans of crazy insanity laced with plenty of dark humor and gore will adore this movie. I personally loved it as much as my tastes will allow, so I consider that a win for both me and the film. Check it out on VOD now, or when it hits theaters on January 25th.


With Fabianne Therese, the Mehalis Twins, and Allison Weissman (Becca from Sex Drive), this movie delivered the hotness. Who cares if John dies at the end, as long as they don't, right?


  1. i love phantasm and bubba ho tep,but this is no good.

  2. It was a so-so watch. It definetly had its funny parts but at some other times I was bored or even annoyed. So it really is a flat C-grade.

    And they shouldn't have messed with the dog.