Imagine you’re an ar-teest. You see something (a movie, a painting, a book) and like it so much that you do exactly the same thing (only a little bit differently). Feel like a plagiarizing asshole? You should. Because you are.
Okay, maybe I’m being a little harsh. After all, I just wrote a twenty-one-thousand word novella where two psychos take people hostage in their home months after watching a movie where two psychos take people hostage in a home and said, “Gee, that’s cool. I wanna do that.” Still, 1980’s Funeral Home is a total rip-off whereas my story was “heavily inspired by.”
Here’s the deal: This teenage girl moves in with her grandmother for the summer in order to help her turn the old, creepy family funeral home into a cheery, sunny bed and breakfast. Grandma’s alone since grandpa ran out, and she’s decided to do her. You go, girl.
Only there’s a problem: Grandpa’s actually living in the basement, and he’s a total dick, pissing and moaning because over his granddaughter being there, driving grandma to tears. We never see him, but he hear him whispering, and boy, does he sound creepy. What’s up with him, anyway? Is he a zombie?
People start dying, because of course they do. One of them is a houseguest who’s looking for his missing wife…the wife who ran off with grandpa. So that’s why he left his family. Men, always thinking with their dicks.
After getting curious and hearing grandma and grandpa arguing, grandbaby (I forget her name. It’s not important anyway) sneaks in to have a look, and lo and behold, grandpa’s a nasty dead body sitting in a chair. Grandma pops out of the shadows with an ax (and wearing very manly attire), and when she talks, it’s the creepy grandpa voice from earlier. What a Psycho!
The granddaughter survives with the help of a local boy she’s been seeing, and after granny’s arrested, it’s revealed that she found out her husband was cheating on her, killed him and his mistress, and kept his body in the basement, you know, the whole Norman Bates treatment.
Yes. Funeral Home is basically Psycho with the genders reversed. Oh, in Psycho it was a motel and here it’s a bed and breakfast. That’s kind of like when Superman puts on his Clark Kent glasses and thinks no one recognizes him, but everyone totally does; you’re not fooling me, Funeral Home AKA Psycho.
I’ll admit though: I didn’t see the twist until it was staring me in the face. I like to think this is because I wasn’t expecting a virtual remake of an earlier movie, but I’m probably just stupid, so, there’s that. Someone smarter than I am would probably have seen it coming a mile away. I didn’t. I went down into that fucking basement expecting a reanimated corpse of some kind, and instead got a beefy woman in a plaid shirt and jeans. Serves me right, really.
Other than being a rip-off, Funeral Home wasn’t that bad. It wasn’t good, but it wasn’t something I’m going to tell my kids about when I start indoctrinating them into the horror genre. Well, maybe, but like “Yeah, Psycho was cool, right? There’s this total rip-off called Funeral Home where it’s a woman. Lol. She’s all dressed up like a lumberjack and uses an ax. It was lame.”
If I remember correctly, Funeral Home hails from Canada. After Shivers, I expected a little more from my friends up north.
Never trust a goddamn canuk.