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PORNO (2019)

Flick takes place in 1992 in a small conservative Christian town. The crew at the local movie theater, Chastity (Jillian Mueller), Ricky (Glenn Scott), Todd (Larry Saperstein) Abe (Evan Daves) and “Heavy Metal” Jeff (Robbie Tann), discover a boarded up basement filled with old film cans and, as it is tradition to watch a movie after closing on a friday night, choose to watch, one of them. It turns out to be some bizarre occult themed horror film and unspooling it releases a beautiful succubus (Katelyn Pearce) into their midst, who turns their conservative values upside down…and far worse.

Comedy/horror is directed by Keola Racela from a script by Matt Black and Laurence Vannicelli. It’s a bit of a mixed bag, though earns some points for being set entirely in an old-fashioned, neighborhood movie theater. The pacing is very slow and there are long periods of time where our demoness disappears to allow for lengthy exposition by the characters. It can be very graphically gory at times and it will depend on your tolerance for mutilated male genitalia as to how much of it is necessary and how much is overkill. Sometimes the flick seems to be making it up as it goes along, but does have a charming cast and Pearce is both alluring and scary as the succubus. The film also treats the leads’ Christian values with respect. In today’s atmosphere of mocking such traditions and beliefs, especially in media, that was admirable and a bit charming. That doesn’t mean, though, the film shies away from commenting on the hypocrisy of some of those who claim to hold such beliefs dear. Overall, it’s an OK comedy/horror that has some creepy moments, some religious and sexual commentary, though could have used a little tighter editing and a bit stronger narrative.

-MonsterZero NJ

2 and 1-2 star rating