A group of four young gay men are followed through the streets of West Hollywood by a man in a horned mask on Halloween night. What they don’t know is that he’s responsible for the murder of two gay men already – and now he’s got his sight set on them.
There are issues with this movie. It’s worth noting that up front.
The story makes less sense as time goes on, and the characters make some truly stupid decisions. There are some pretty big holes in the plot, and it’s a little frustrating that there’s no motivation for the killer doing what he does – or why he’s honed in on this group in particular, when there are streets full of other men he could kill. And the production quality (specifically the film quality) could have been better.
I can’t help but mark queer films on a bit of a curve, because they rarely have the financial backing that other films do. And, compared to a lot of other queer films, Hellbent actually ain’t that bad (particularly for its age).
Problems with the plot aside (because, as writing for this blog is reminding me, they’re so damned prevalent), Hellbent has some decent special effects, and – despite what I’ve said above – doesn’t actually have the worst plot that I’ve seen in a slasher flick. That might say some worrying things about script writing in general, but it’s still true.
The acting is also pretty good, which is as surprising as it is welcome. This isn’t your stereotypical low budget slasher, with a group of attractive but completely tone deaf actors intoning their lines in front of a camera; it’s a group of attractive guys actually doing a decent job of acting. I can’t complain about that.
If you’re looking for a queer slasher that gets the job done, and like having an excuse to yell “WHY WOULD YOU DO THAT!?” at the screen, then Hellbent might just be for you.