Directed by Tracy Lee Staton [Other horror films: N/A]
In many ways, this movies comes across as a very low-budget version of Storm of the Century, and while it’s not a bad film, it really didn’t do that much for me.
The story is perfectly fine, though there are some questions left unanswered when we reach the end, so it’s not as though the script couldn’t have been tightened up a bit. At the same time, there’s a rather subdued feel to the story (which isn’t shared by actor performances, but more on that soon), and what I mean is that while plenty of horrific things happen, there’s not really a major conclusion, and while people are going mildly crazy, the film doesn’t really focus strongly on that.
Most of the actors and actresses were a bit much. The movie indeed has a few more humorously-inclined scenes, but plenty of individuals in the movie act as though it’s a full-blown comedy. In no particular order, these individuals stood out somewhat negatively: Matthew Ewald, Royce Hobson, John Johnson, Jaclyn Vames, and Robb Barger. Barger, admittedly, had a pretty solid breakdown near the end of the film, and compared to the others, he’s probably the most competently decent actor here.
The movie has been described as a supernatural slasher, which is moderately accurate, but I wish there had been more scenes of slashing as opposed to random characters, who in the end don’t really matter, throughout the town. The gore itself is okay on the occasions is comes up, but that’s not as common as one might hope.
This is Tracy Lee Staton’s first full-length attempt, and it’s not bad for what it is, but some things didn’t work with me. The script, especially regarding John Johnson’s character of the priest, was overly campy, and while that may be intentional, it didn’t fit with what I thought Deadlines was aiming for. Some interesting ideas and decent kills aside, this probably isn’t a movie I’d go out of my way to watch again. Still, for a first-time feature, it’s not too shabby if the story works out for you.