Five men head to a remote village to help a friend to get over a painful divorce. When they get there, they discover the local women have been infected by a virus that turns them into rampaging cannibals.
This is the sharp, laddish, creepy, funny war-of-the-sexes horror-comedy Lesbian Vampire Killers wanted to be. Doghouse manages to have its exploitation cake, with all the bloody icing a splat-fan could want, but still eat it in the spirit of revolutionary self-criticism as pointed jokes are made at the expense of the heroes’ attitudes.
A bunch of blokes — including contemporary British icons Danny Dyer, Noel Clarke and Stephen Graham, all fresh from films about hooligans — visit an out-of-the-way village for a lads’ weekend and find the womenfolk infected by an out-of-control bioweapon which has turned them into hungry, man-eating monsters. When asked what kind of disease only affects women, the most unreconstructed dickhead in the gang suggests, “Bird flu?” The menfolk gamely suffer a series of humiliations at the teeth, claws, scissors and axes of the frothing harridan ‘zom-birds’, with Dyer’s repeated catchphrase, “The ladies love me,” setting up his mates’ decision to use him as live bait.
Among the creatures are a number of female stereotypes — a hairdresser with swift-snipping shears and a large warrior witch with a sword are the most dangerous, but you also get schoolgirls, barmaids, a dentist (with drill), a bride etc. When Dyer briefly wonders if they ought to be killing these dangerous creatures, he’s told, “This is not the time to stop objectifying women.” The script is witty about the uselessness of men, who can’t resist rating which killer monsters are the most shaggable or taking time out of a life-or-death crisis to play with toy cars, but it has enough genuine scares and suspense scenes to deliver proper horror movie thrills.
A major step forward for British horror director Jake West, of Evil Aliens fame, and one of the freshest, most overlooked UK films of recent years. Make sure it’s huge on DVD.
Fairly unreconstructed but genuinely witty laddish horror comedy.