Back in 2007, Director Eli Roth created a memorable fake trailer for the movie “Grindhouse” that was called “Thanksgiving” The movie depicted the low-budget slasher films of the late 70s and early 80s and focused on a killer on a rampage in Plymouth during Thanksgiving.
The trailer became a huge hit and many fans wanted to see the film become a reality as another fake trailer; “Machette” had.
The years passed and finally, Roth brought a full version of the film to cinemas and this time out he opted to set the film in a modern setting and not give the movie the grainy and low-budget look of the fake trailer.
When a Black Friday sale becomes a deadly riot, the town of Plymouth is attempting to recover a year later by going back to normal. The town celebrates Thanksgiving in a big way and a parade, sales, and the usual traditions are to be celebrated like never before.
Unfortunately a killer taking the visage of town founder John Carver is on the loose and seems to be targeting the kids who were present at the store riot as well as at the owner of the store.
The bodies start to pile up with victims often displayed in gruesome ways which has the entire town in a panic.
As Sheriff Newlon (Patrick Dempsey) attempts to solve the case, the killer becomes more doing and the carnage increases as the race to find the killer and stay alive intensifies.
The film is a slow-burn getting started after the opener but the signature mix of comedy and gore as well as some Gallows humor is what drives the film.
For me the understanding that the film is a campy parody of the Revenge Horror film and to be taken with a wink seems to be exactly what the cast does. This film checks many of the boxes that viewers will expect to see in a horror film but does it as more of a campy homage versus trying to be new and fresh.
I got more than a few laughs at some of the over-the-top situations and there were the usual screams during some of the more intense moments form the audience. While it will not break new ground for the genre, “Thanksgiving” serves up enough of what fans expect and may well be the start of a new franchise.
3 stars out of 5