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Movie review: "Stan Helsing"

dvd cover for "Stan Helsing"
dvd cover for "Stan Helsing"www.ign.com

In the realm of the Scary Movie franchise and any other spoof movie than has been made in recent years comes their newest fare: Stan Helsing. As more and more of these types of movies are made, the less funny the seem to become, although this one does barely rise above expectations.  On Halloween night video store clerk Stan (Steve Howe) must deliver some movies to his boss' mother who just happens to live in a cursed housing development that used to be a movie set lot, how convenient.  Stan, along with his best friend Teddy (Kenan Thompson), Teddy's date Mia (Desi Lydic), and Stan's ex girlfriend Nadine (Diora Baird) have a night they won't soon forget.

Along the way strange things begin happening, and almost every horror cliché is acted upon.  Including the hitchhiker that should not have been picked up because he's just escaped prison.  At least in this movie they try to reason why they are going to pick him up and quickly realize they've made a mistake. So these characters are not as dense as they first appeared.  The other horror cliché's come when we are introduced to every horror movie villain that has been popular in recent years (including Chucky, Pinhead, Jason, and Freddy Krueger among others), although the characters have been renamed usually by just a letter or two, probably so the filmmakers won't be sued.  Leslie Nielsen even makes a cameo as a snarky waitress.

Overall, Stan Helsing would probably not make for a good comedic viewing.  It would probably be more pleasing to the horror movie crowd looking for a somewhat decent spoof. The actors really seem to try their best to be funny, and occasionally it pays off, but for the most part they fall flat.  The most enjoyable performances by far came  from Thompson and Lydic who, on more than one occasion, actually did get some laughs. 

** 1/2 (2 1/2 stars)

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