3 February 2008 | gavin6942
Charles Band Rolls Out The Expected
After inheriting a casino from his great uncle, a young man and a few of his friends decide to check it out and spend the night. Guess what? Past employees of the casino who have been killed by the uncle haunt the place and are eager to get their revenge on the new owner. Can the curse be broken? Will they survive?
Charles Band... that name conjures up all sorts of thoughts, but most of all it should bring to mind one thing: low quality horror films. Once upon a time, hits like "Puppet Master" came from Band, as did other cheesy (but enjoyable) movies like "Head of the Family" and "Troll". Now, we are treated to low-grade smut like this and "Evil Bong". Are they still enjoyable? Sadly, yes. But if there is anything Band lacks, it is artistic merit.
Veterans Sid Haig and Michael Berryman are here, which is nice (but not necessary). Kristyn Green appears, as she did in "Evil Bong" and one other Band production -- she has the chance to get big, but must escape his territory. The other actors are good, but we will likely never see them again outside of a Full Moon film. And I do not feel bad about that... they were more or less here for the higher body count.
The film is rather vague about why the ghosts haunt the casino and how they can be stopped. (It seems they want the uncle's silver, but that begs the question -- what can ghosts do with silver if they are dead?) The background of the characters in general seems lacking. A guy inherits a casino from an uncle he does not know, because he is the next of kin. Well, where are all the other family members? I understand these things make the plot workable and the story easier, but they are also illustrative of Band's shortcomings -- he is great at dirty jokes and senseless violence, as well as topless women (which does not come up as much here as you would expect). He fails at three-dimensional characters. That may be writer August White's fault, but Band is White's boss, and therefore to blame.
When a film needs three titles ("Dead Man's Hand", then "Casino of the Damned" and now "Haunted Casino") I get worried, and when Band is attached I get even more worried. In the end, you get what you would expect from Full Moon. Cheesy horror and not much more. If you are with another horror fan and have some booze, you might enjoy this. But it is not a date movie or anything you are going to want to see again and again or talk up to friends. There is a reason that "straight-to-DVD" was invented and this film is it.