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Review: CLOWN (2019)

With the second It film coming out and killer clowns, in general, being popular you know The Asylum, (Flight 666, Triassic World), was going to get in on the action. And they have with Clown, (no relation to the 2014 film), a film that wastes a good premise and setup due to lacklustre execution.

Back in 1994 a small circus, it’s more of a carnival really, sets up in a small desert town. For reasons that are never made very clear, the townspeople grab their guns and kill off the circus folk. All except for one little boy.

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25 years later, a group of college kids on their way to a music festival make a pit stop in the desert. Davy (Taylor Watson Seupel) wanders off to get some pictures for his Instagram channel. He finds the carnival’s funhouse instead. He also finds out that that little boy is still there, and all grown up. Meet our villain, Thoth The Clown (Dave Klec).

The rest of the crew slowly straggle along looking for him. They find the town and then the funhouse. Hearing sounds from inside, they go in looking for Davy. Big mistake, as Thoth has turned its features into lethal traps. It’s his house and that’s his idea of fun.

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With the deserted attraction setting as well as some creepy dolls that bring to mind Tourist Trap. There are elements of The Funhouse and Killer Klowns From Outer Space as well. Add in a large cast of potential victims, and Clown had some real potential.

Sadly, Clown lets most of that potential trickle away. The characters are all one-dimensional clichés, Gordy (Sam Lazarus), the fat kid who whines a lot. Austin (Adam Elshar), the muscular one who fights back, etc. The girls seem to be there just to look cute and scream a lot. It takes far too long for the killings to start and when they do, they’re fairly lacklustre for the most part. There is one scene with killer dolls that’s quite effective. Especially since it’s not clear just how he’s controlling them, which also made me think of Tourist Trap and its telekinetically controlled mannequins

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There are also a few huge plot holes that hurt Clown. After being abandoned for 25 years, the town looks very well cared for, right up to the fresh police tape on building doors. And where does the electricity come from? Has Thoth used the quarter-century to make his own solar panels? But I suppose logic is a bit much to ask from writer/director Eric Forsberg. His previous collaborations with The Asylum include Snakes On A Train, Ghost Shark, and Arachnoquake.

A dull, by the numbers disappointment, Clown is available on streaming services. You can look for details on The Asylum’s website and Facebook page.

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