Studio: Attack Entertainment
Director: Paul Tarnopol
Writer: Paul Tarnopol
Producer: Teri Tarnopol
Stars: Danielle Dallacco, Angelina Boccella, Giovanni Roselli, Chris Lazzaro, Nicole Rutigliano, Ashley Mitchell, Christina Scaglione, Brenton Duplessie, Brett Azar, John Michael Hastie, Leonarda Bosch, Nicky Figueredo, Richard Christy, Sal Governale, Bigfoot, Ron Jeremy, Shawn C. Phillips
A masked maniac stalks a vacationing group of Jersey Shore socialites and their fist-pumping paramours.
Six curvy girls with Jersey drawls, jangling jewelry, and hip-hugging dresses find themselves vacationing in a remote family home when stoner property manager Ron Jeremy mistakenly rents their waterfront condo to a crew of “chongas” instead. First at the beach and then at a nightclub, the ladies make friends with a quintet of physique-obsessed meatheads with only one thing on their minds. Luckily for the gold chain-wearing boys, it is the same thing the gum-chewing girls are thinking of, too. Back to the woodland home they go to couple up when a masked maniac arrives to off them one at a time whether by sizzling skin on a tanning bed or by slicing at boob implants with a butcher’s knife.
As a comedic horror film, “Jersey Shore Massacre” only barely tickles my funny bone and scratches my scary movie itch with even less enthusiasm. However, I am willing to admit that I may not belong to the target audience the filmmakers have in mind. It is possible that character quirks I find irritating are actually sly satire and what reads as eye-rolling tripe is clever comedy whose references I’m not entirely keyed into.
Although I have never seen a single episode of “Jersey Shore,” mainstream media has nonetheless ensured that I am still cognizant of pop culture personalities like Snooki, The Situation, and “Jersey Shore Massacre” executive producer Jenni ‘Jwoww’ Farley. I assumed that six seasons of “The Sopranos” granted enough familiarity with New Jersey Italian-American stereotypes and that what little I know of MTV’s reality show offered enough peripheral awareness of tanning obsessions, greasy hairstyles, and nicknames like “Guido” that I could still pick up everything that “Jersey Shore Massacre” put down.
Maybe that’s not the case. As a “Jersey Shore” parody, I’m not much of an authority on how successful the film really is. Yet I can say that intentional or not, the humor is fairly pedestrian either way and is primarily as lowbrow as it comes.
All of the gags are basically about how stupid and vapid everyone is, though my guess is that is precisely what is expected of these personality types. Dialogue ranges from mildly amusing (one girl balks at $7.50 tour tickets as being too expensive, haggling instead for a price of $50 for six of them) to groan inducing (another girl wonders if a London transplant had to learn English when she moved to America) to somewhere in between (Stockholm Syndrome is confused as Stockholder’s Syndrome). “Jersey Shore Massacre” is either lazily picking low-hanging fruit when it comes to its jokes or it purposefully wades in the shallow end of the comedy pool, exactly where it wants to be.
Most of the cast slides into their roles with the right tone of caricature without being too cartoony, and affable cattiness without taking anything too seriously. The girls even seem like they could have been even more fun with material as voluptuous as they are.
The guys, on the other hand, are often too depthless. Chris Lazzaro as headband-sporting goon Freddy strangely overacts with a painfully distracting hyena cackle. If this is a purposeful choice to make Freddy more of a buffoon, then earplugs should be complementary for these scenes. But if this is supposed to be a send-up of a particular “Jersey Shore” cast member with an annoying laugh I’m not aware of, then I apologize and concede that Lazzaro bashes a grand slam on the impersonation front.
While I’m not immersed enough in reality television culture to know where “Jersey Shore Massacre” lands with its ha-ha hilarity, other than to judge it as predictably typical, I know enough about horror to classify the movie as particularly tepid in that department. A big chunk of the movie doesn’t drop any bodies at all, focusing instead on parading the actresses around in bikinis while reinforcing their dimwittedness, and piling on product placement for the Rush Couture clothing brand. But even in being a horror movie hybrid, “Jersey Shore Massacre” is not made for dyed-in-the-wool gorehounds in search of a top tier fright film. The movie is a tongue-in-cheek lampoon first and a slasher film second.
How well it fares as the latter is not very well at all. The former is a matter up for much more debate. I would not advise anyone to seek out the film if s/he was not previously inclined to have an interest in the premise. But if a parody of Jersey Shore stereotypes framed as a deliberately routine slasher movie piques one’s curiosity, it is hard to imagine that “Jersey Shore Massacre” does not meet whatever expectations might come with the concept and a cast that includes Ron Jeremy.
As far as objective movie reviews go, “Jersey Shore Massacre” is a surprisingly tough nut to crack. Since a question mark isn’t a valid way to score a movie, I’m going to take the easy way out and King Solomon it right down the middle. 2.5 out of five stars. By the title and artwork alone, you probably already have all the information you need to guess which side of the fence you are likely to fall on.
Review Score: 50