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Loaded with guts and gore, Mask of Thorn is an 80s inspired throwback, teleporting us all the way back to the golden age of horror.

Mask of ThornThe Mycho Enter­tain­ment group is back at it again with their sixth install­ment in the Mycho­verse and their sev­enth over­all fea­ture film. This is the sec­ond film show­cas­ing the masked mad­man Thorn, a pre­quel to their 2014 slash­er flick, Lega­cy of Thorn.

The film was writ­ten and direct­ed by MJ Dixon, and pro­duced by Anna Dixon. It stars Eve Kathryn Oliv­er, Sophie Bryant, Maria Lee Mether­ing­ham, and Atti­cus Machi­avel­lian as the sav­age ser­i­al killer, Thorn.

A blast to the past, this 80’s homage will have you jump­ing out of your seat with excite­ment.

Mask of Thorn

Once again, the micro-bud­get mae­stro MJ Dixon has blessed us with anoth­er Thorn film, this time dig­ging up the past and giv­ing us a fur­ther glimpse into the back sto­ry of the sav­age beast. At times humor­ous, MASK OF THORN is a blood drenched spec­ta­cle that doesn’t skimp out on prac­ti­cal gore. Bru­tal­ly vio­lent and beau­ti­ful­ly bloody, this mer­ci­less slash­er film is not to be tak­en light­ly.

Bethany Lovell (Oliv­er) is com­ing of age, and noth­ing could be more impor­tant than cel­e­brat­ing her sweet six­teen. How­ev­er, after being kid­napped by her friends and con­vinced to break into their school for a lit­tle drink­ing and fun, Bethany and com­pa­ny soon dis­cov­er they’re not alone. Stalked by the malev­o­lent crea­ture known as Thorn, they must stave off their attack­er until dawn, when the mon­ster mag­i­cal­ly returns to whence he came.

There are some real­ly inspir­ing things hap­pen­ing in this film. For one, the prac­ti­cal gore is on anoth­er lev­el. With such a small bud­get, Dixon has yet again manip­u­lat­ed his sur­round­ings — as only he could, using what­ev­er was at his dis­pos­al — in order to pull off some tru­ly remark­able and artis­tic kills.

In addi­tion, the writ­ing and dia­logue con­tin­ue to excel and ascend with each film Mycho cre­ates.

The first film, Lega­cy of Thorn, was a tad dif­fi­cult to fol­low and under­stand. How­ev­er, that was not the case in Mask of Thorn. This time around the con­cepts were eas­i­er to pick up on, and the film felt smoother and more pre­cise than its pre­de­ces­sor. I did feel that the dia­logue could have been based more in the eight­ies though, con­tain­ing more slang from that peri­od, yet the film flowed with ease none the less.

The act­ing in this was leagues beyond that of the pre­vi­ous film. The mar­velous per­for­mances giv­en by the two lead actress­es cause you to believe that they might actu­al­ly be BFFs in real life. There was a nat­ur­al chem­istry between the two, and you could tell they were on the same wave­length, bliss­ful­ly feed­ing off of each oth­er. Eve Kathryn Oliver’s por­tray­al of Bethany Lovell was key, giv­ing the audi­ence the per­fect good guy (or girl in this case) to bond with and root for.

The sets were great as usu­al, espe­cial­ly the school that was used, which gave the film­mak­ers plen­ty of room to maneu­ver and per­fect their scenes. The light­ing and use of shad­ow­ing was Mycho’s best yet, mak­ing it eas­i­er to con­ceal any sim­ple flaws that might be pro­duced oth­er­wise. The cin­e­matog­ra­phy was awe inspir­ing, as it always is with each film Dixon directs.

The sound and score are a few of the things that Mycho does bet­ter than almost any­one.

The sound effects used for the char­ac­ter of Thorn is what real­ly sells the scares and keeps you hun­gry for more. The sound bites grace­ful­ly set the mood, appro­pri­ate­ly con­vey­ing the strength and bru­tal­i­ty of the blood thirsty mon­ster.

There were only a few things I didn’t like about the film, which sub­se­quent­ly boils down to an unfor­tu­nate lack of fund­ing. The cos­tumes were just, so-so. The wig used for the actor in the open­ing scene was com­i­cal and unfit­ting, and the use of a doll for the same sequence was good for a laugh. Also, there was one spe­cial effect prob­lem that nipped at me, which I won’t spoil for poten­tial view­ers. How­ev­er, I felt that that effect actu­al­ly added to the old school throw­back vibe the film aspired to.

I did feel that the film took a moment to find its stride, which wasn’t until the par­ty scene inside the school. This is when I believe the film real­ly began to take off and catch flight. Also, I was a bit dis­pleased with the look of Thorn, as I felt it took a lit­tle force away from the character’s pow­er­ful aura.

Despite these few minor, insignif­i­cant flaws, there were some real­ly breath­tak­ing John Car­pen­ter inspired ele­ments in this film, which came togeth­er beau­ti­ful­ly.

MASK OF THORN is an all-out slug fest. An instant cult clas­sic. Fun as Hell. A machete straight to the gul­let. Action packed from start to fin­ish. Bloody, grue­some fun.

Over­all, I give this film 2.5 out of 3 scratch­es for its styl­ized, 80s-infused throw­back tropes.

In con­clu­sion, MASK OF THORN is a sub­lime­ly, well thread­ed film. So, if you’re a huge slash­er nerd and tired of the same old worn out icons, do your­self a favor and give this a run.

Thorn is the next biggest thing to hit the sub genre, and I, for one, can’t wait to see what hap­pens next.

Click here to pre-order your copy of Mask of Thorn now. 

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