“The Chamber of Terror”

I never could get engaged in “The Chamber of Terror,” a bloody revenge thriller that takes far too long to find its horror legs. The characters are uninteresting, the plot is too simple, and the acting is, well, borderline atrocious. The only thing this movie has going for it are the practical gore effects, which are stomach-churning if not creative. If puddles of blood and unfurled intestines are what you’re after, this film delivers.

The narrator tells us from the start that this account is a “99% factual” macabre tale about tough guy Nash Caruthers (Timothy Paul McCarthy), a man kidnapped by members of a crime family. He’s taken to a makeshift torture chamber where things go from bad to worse. There’s something sinister close by and towards the end of the night, a supernatural witch, a priest, and mountains of cocaine will be involved.

The film is painful to watch for the first hour, with writer / director Michael Pereira keeping the focus on his very weak script and clumsy dialogue. The campy, self-referential writing doesn’t work. You can tell this is supposed to be funny, but there’s very little humor (or scares, for that matter).

The film is so talky that it seems Pereira is another wannabe Tarantino. He’s not. When a movie leans so heavily on the conversational aspects, it needs a strong script and compelling dialogue, or at least charismatic actors or interesting characters. This film has none of those things.

The gore and horror effects are the best thing about “The Chamber of Terror,” and the final third is an all-out, carnage-filled bloodbath. It’s fun to watch if you’re into that sort of thing, but the rest of the film flounders.

By: Louisa Moore

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