The comedy-horror film is a tricky balancing act.
Pull it off and you've got "Shaun of
Richard Bates Jr.'s "Suburban Gothic" misses the mark, but thanks largely to its cult-worthy cast, the miss can still be fun.
Strange things begin happening shortly after slacker business-school grad Raymond (Matthew Gray Gubler, very much in the
The vengeful ghost of a murdered girl is responsible for the weirdness, so Raymond teams with goth bartender Becca (
Bates and co-writer Mark Bruner seem to be going for a satirical tone that falls somewhere between David Lynch and Seth Rogen, but deliberately cheesy effects and a sluggish pace sink the early potential.
Ultimately the film is too self-consciously irreverent for its own good. But that inspired ensemble, which also includes John Waters, Mackenzie Phillips and Sally Kirkland, are so enjoying themselves playing fast and loose with the material, they frequently succeed in bringing the film back from the dead.
MPAA rating: R for sexual content, language, violence, drug material.
Running time: 1 hour, 30 minutes.