Centered on a serial killer who preys only on pop media stars created by the entertainment industrial complex, “L.A. Slasher” gives the impression that writer-director Martin Owen filmed it off a particularly misanthropic and juvenile one-page script treatment rather than a complete screenplay.
As if the story hasn’t evolved since the pitch meeting, its characters still go by antonomasias — the reality star (Brooke Hogan), the heiress (Elizabeth Morris), the socialite (Korrina Rico), etc. — rather than names. Unsurprisingly, they are mere archetypal caricatures rather than fleshed-out human beings.
The film has only disdain for the murder victims, and revels in their torture and deaths at the hands of the eponymous masked killer. There’s no sense of suspense to speak of because the conclusion doesn’t hinge on anyone’s potential for survival. Even if taken as a satire, the film can muster only one punch line and beats that dead horse repeatedly.
It takes a really sick individual to derive any pleasure from watching the senseless sufferings of others. Even the most talentless and narcissistic fame seekers on reality television are not nearly as vile, reprehensible or worthless as a film that actively wishes harm on them.
MPAA rating: R for violence, sexual content, language and drug use
Running time: 1 hour, 26 minutes
Playing: At AMC Universal CityWalk Stadium 19; AMC Atlantic Times Square 14, Monterey Park; Laemmle Music Hall 3, Beverly Hills.