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Film Review: Red Victoria (2008)

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Talented but broke screenwriter Jim (Tony Brownrigg) reluctantly agrees to pen a horror script to raise some cash. But his inspiration comes in a very unusual form: a murderous muse named Victoria (Arianne Martin) who’s determined to give Jim a true taste of terror. As the vengeful spirit begins killing his friends one by one, Jim turns to his pal Carl (Edward Landers), a horror movie expert, for help in evicting his deadly visitor.



Directed by Tony Brownrigg
Written by Tony Brownrigg
Starring Arianne Martin, Tony Brownrigg, Edward Landers.

An unsuccessful romance writer is convinced by his agent to write a horror film to help make ends meet. He winds up accidentally releasing an undead muse named Victoria in his efforts to write horror. She takes charge of the situation by inspiring him to write a horror script by killing all his friends and family. Written by Anthony Brownrigg.

Sometime last year I found a trailer online for a horror comedy called “Red Victoria”. The movie was low budget but looked great and seemed pretty funny and wetted my appetite for more (as any good trailer should). I have been trying to get my hands on the full version ever since, but despite many attempts I came up with nothing. When the movie was finally released I got my copy and sat down to enjoy it. After waiting for a long time would I have built it up so much in my mind that the movie could never match my expectations? I am very happy to report that “Red Victoria” is every bit as good as the hype.

Jim, (Tony Brownrigg) a pseudo-intellectual is happy writing movies that no one seems to want to buy. He is comfortable thinking and not acting. He and his best friend (Christian Taylor) like to make fun of the world and believe they are above everyone else. His agent (Miles Brennan) tells him he needs to make a sale and what movie companies are buying are horror films so he needs to write a horror movie and fast. Jim calls his friend Carl (Edward Landers) to explain to him what makes a good horror movie but finds nothing he can connect with. One night as Jim is drinking he accidentally calls on undead muse, Victoria (Arianne Martin) who forces him to focus on writing as she will kill anyone who gets in the way. He and Carl try to plan a way to kill Victoria before the body count gets too high.

I think of the movie as being my current favorite and has everything I can ask out of a film and more. “Red Victoria”. The writing is sharp, the acting is perfect pitch and camera work is spot on. I can’t help but love a movie that works in the Abbot and Costello routine “Who’s on first” and works it into a horror frame work. If you don’t get any laughs out of the movie I think you are deader than Victoria.

Normally when you find a movie that has credits that list the director as the writer, main actor, cinematographer, editor and visual effect supervisor you are normally in a world of pain. The more credits done by the same person the less focused you find the production, but in the case of “Red Victoria” the exemption breaks the rule. Tony Brownrigg seems to be equally talented in all the roles he plays in the production: he has the right comedic tone for the lead, the effect shots work well in the story and pacing of the story never drags. He is even better at casting the other parts: Arianne Martin has created a horror icon with Victoria, evil and yet proper in manners. She appears in different versions of the role: a completely decaying corpse, a sexy idiot and the smiling half dead appearance which is seen through most of the movie. You can understand how Jim (Tony Brownrigg) gets attached to her despite her being a “little evil”. Edward Landers as Carl the horror fanatic is a joy to watch, always bouncing around saying whatever is on his mind even if he hasn’t finished thinking it. Christian Taylor as Blake, the fast talking intellectual is the other side of the balance of Jim’s life, its what he sees himself as, unlike the person that Victoria is trying to make him be.

What I liked about the movie:

The acting and interplay of the leads are very natural and well done.

The special effects are just plain fun. The eye poke of Victoria’s
eye is a moment that makes you laugh and go “yuck” all at the same time.

I also love the receptionist’s head twisting around as she drops out of frame,
makes me laugh every time.

Arianne is a prefect balance of sexy, proper, and evil.

Check out Christian Taylor’s outtakes as he comes up with different versions of
the dialogue.

The music by Desha Dunnahoe sets the mood.

Things I didn’t like about the movie:
Sorry I can’t think of anything I don’t like in the movie.

If you want a movie that makes you laugh, think a little and even has some honorific moments then “Red Victoria” is for you. Rent it, buy it but by all means you should see it. Another movie that shows you don’t need a big budget to make a great movie. I am hoping there will be a sequel, and the film is open for one, so lets make sure they are able to make it. A movie that you should invite all your friends over to see. I give it 5 out of 5 stars. I plan to stay up watch it again this evening.

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