Keep moving, nothing to see here.
Ulli Lommel’s Black Dahlia (2006): 7 out of 10. No, the score is not a misprint. Yes, I will have to use the entire review to explain this grievous lack of judgment.
First, this is not the studio release of Black Dahlia. This is a Z budget rip off with decent cover art. Second, this is an Ulli Lommel movie who I swear is Uwe Boll’s uncle and one of the worst directors working in sub-par serial killer films today. (His Zodiac Killer was one of the worst films I’ve seen this year) He and his trusty 1985 camcorder have been shoveling out serial killer movies the last few years and he apparently has some compromising pictures of Lionsgate executives because they keep releasing them.
Half the cast is unnecessary, the drunken cop is over the top and one of the main bad guys is Anna Nicole Smith’s first husband. The directing style is a rip-off of Saw and three the sets used are horrible.
So why the positive score? Somewhere in the first twenty minutes the movie becomes so bad it actually becomes good. There is something ridiculously appealing about vivisection, bondage, and catholic school girl uniforms mixed in with swing music. Now read that last sentence again: if that doesn’t appeal to you, run far and fast. There is nothing else to see here, so keep moving.
Also in the film’s favor is that the acting isn’t so bad it grates on the nerves. (A real risk with zero budget films) The gore scenes are plentiful and done in a Monty Python over the top style. The ladies are somewhat attractive and look like real people. (I don’t think this was a naturalistic touch by Lommel. I just think he couldn’t afford better-looking plastic woman.) The soundtrack excellently combines catchy monk style classical (think the Conan soundtrack) and 40s style pop tunes. When a pigtailed catholic schoolgirl and two masked guys dance around with severed limbs to a Sinatra tune, you can’t wipe the smile off my face. That’s why I liked it. Excuse me while I go seek some help.