Friday, September 2, 2022

All Eyes: Movie Review



Comedic thriller and monster movie that goes for the insane.

When it starts with a crazy hook, and gives an insane premise, I should not be surprised when it leads to an insane movie, and yet here we are. All Eyes is a comedic thriller turned monster movie; fun at times and crazy all of the time, but sure to be memorable which is a feat on its own. It’s a story of a podcaster who goes in search of a crazy story and finds one.   2022

Directed by: Todd Greenlee

Screenplay by: Alex Greenlee

Starring: Jasper Hammer, Ben Hall

Allen Wolfe (Jasper Hammer) is a successful host of a podcast called U.S. Sane, a show which appeals to the less-grounded people out there and indulges people in some sci-fi and supernatural conspiracy theories. He’s accused of being cynical, a guy who lacks empathy for his listeners and only cares about where the entertainment is at. The opening scene is Allen interviewing a guy who was convinced a shadowy monster figure was following him and now he has trapped this figure in his basement, chaos quickly ensues. But this isn’t the crazy story. Allen is now out of a job and in need of a comeback.

The crazy story is an old farmer in rural Oklahoma who is mourning his deceased wife has paid Allen $25,000 to go monster hunting with him. There’s a large monster covered in eyes living in the forest and killing his cattle. As all sane people know, the story is not about the supposed monster, the story is about Allen connecting with crazy old man who is grieving a loss and unable to cope with the realities around him.

Don (Ben Hall) has plenty of insane rules that Allen has to follow – but it’s for his own safety since Don has booby-trapped his entire property in order to trap and kill the monster that he has named Eyes. This is obviously a disaster waiting to happen, and yep, it is.

I really don’t want to give anything more away, so I’ll just say it is indeed a monster movie as advertised. I loved the first half. The premise that the story isn’t about the monster but about a cynical man learning empathy as he connects with a man who the world has left behind is indeed the best part of the movie. It’s funny and engaging because we know more insanity is looming.

It becomes a blood-filled thriller in a story about survival and that part drags a lot. However, this film does an impressive job with its limited budget. Homemade weapons galore, a creepy old farmhouse, and primarily just one character for most of the movie. Jasper Hammer does really well balancing the comedy with the horror-thriller. Allen never says whether he believes in monsters which is perfect for his character – he just needs to believe in his listeners even though others might mistake that for cruelty and only believing in entertainment.

All Eyes is a little all over the place, but it’s a mostly enjoyable time especially if you embrace the insanity.