Ring of Darkness (2005)

Disclaimer: This is one of the worst movies I’ve ever seen. But it falls into the “so bad it’s good” category; hence, the review.

Just when you think it’s safe to follow your dream of joining a boy band, along comes the Ring of Darkness.

Directed by David Decoteau (Creepozoids, Sorority Babes in the Slimeball Bowl-o-Rama) and starring Adrienne Barbeau (Burial of the Rats, Cannibal Women in the Avocado Jungle of Death) and American Idol contestant Ryan Starr, this film takes you deep into the heart of boy-pop heartthrobs who enjoy throbbing hearts a bit too much.

The film (and I use the term “film” very loosely) begins with Gordo McSteel on the run from some unidentified danger. He packs his duffel bag at midnight and slings on a cross necklace, shimmies down the ivy trellis of a fabulous estate house into swirling fog and goes dashing down the beach, where he is (naturally) surrounded by baddies in black. At this point he tells them he’s going to reveal their secret to the world. Not such a good idea when you’re trying to escape, Gordo. They in turn (naturally) devour him.

And cue the music video. Five sets of washboard abs, blindingly white teeth and artfully groomed hair gyrate and pump behind the opening credits. The song they’re singing, mind you, is the only song we hear from them throughout the rest of the movie, and I can’t remember how it even goes. That should tell you about the soundtrack right there.

Enter Sarah and Shawn. They’re at the auditions for the new lead singer of Take Ten (the band’s über-cheesy name), and although they’re billed as the hottest, most famous, multi-platinum selling boys in the world, the auditions are held in what seems to the be parking lot of a used car dealership while about only 20 girls alternately cheer or boo, depending on the auditioner’s vocal stylings and dance ability. Shawn is a rocker, man, adamant that it’s all about the music, man, and he can’t believe he’s here, man, trying out for a boy band. Decked out in ripped denims, spiky (highlighted) hair and a vintage fender (yeah, sure) slung across his back, Shawn is the supposed anti-hero in all of us. His girlfriend of two months (we know, because we are told), Sarah, keeps telling him that a break’s a break, dude, and this could be his shot, dude, to like, take it to another level.

Enter Adrienne Barbeau as the band’s manager. She nods knowingly as Shawn takes the stage, pronouncing with utter conviction, “He’s got edge.” It’s hard to see how she reaches this conclusion, however, since they all sing the band’s one song, and they all sound suspiciously like the newly deceased Gordo McSteel. The top three finalists are invited back to the band’s privately owned island, where they are expected to compete to the death to be the new front man of this (literally) boy band from hell.

And that’s just the first 25 minutes, people. There’s another hour left in this schlock-fest of super-sized proportions. I don’t think I’m spoiling anything by telling you there’s a groupie/undead orgy, a few face peelings and a rather silly looking crossbow that appears out of nowhere and does no good (you can’t shoot and kill the undead, dummy; they’re already dead).

All in all, a very satisfyingly awful movie. I got the biggest kick out of ridiculing the script, plot, actors, costumes, dance (and I use the term “dance” loosely) sequences, props, etc. etc. etc. There was just so much material to make fun of. Others who watched with me were adamant in wanting their 85 minutes back, but I had just enough fun to not regret the experience.

An independent review stated “I ran, I ran so far away… This movie provokes the fight or flight impulse. I did not believe a movie could be so bad. Not a horror film. Repeat, not a horror film. Not a comedy. Not drama for dang sure. I am thinking rodent pooh in your cabinets. Yeah, that’s it. This movie is like a mouse has peed and pooped all over your frying pan.”

Which is possibly the best review I’ve ever read of one of the worst movies ever made. Enjoy.

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