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article imageReview: ‘Blood Knuckles’ wins best feature at Canadian film fest Special

By Sarah Gopaul     Dec 2, 2014 in Entertainment
‘Bloody Knuckles’ is the bizarre and entertaining tale of a severed hand on a mission of revenge against the local gangsters that separated it from its body.
Canadian horror film festival Blood in the Snow wrapped on Sunday night with “The Bloodies” 2014 awards ceremony. The three-day showcase includes genre features and shorts, highlighting some of the country’s best in the category of frightening and weird. The weekend’s top winner, Bloody Knuckles, probably falls into the latter grouping.
Travis (Adam Boys) has talent, which he utilizes to create a provocative underground comic called “Vulgarian Invasions.” His income is supplemented by architectural designs that make significantly more than his hobby. However it’s the former that draws the attention of a local gangster, Leonard Fong (Kasey Ryne Mazak), who feels the comic is a direct insult to him. As punishment, he chops off Travis’s drawing hand to ensure he can no longer create. After the attack Travis withdraws from the world, hiding in his bedroom with a mini-fridge full of beer. But his severed hand is not satisfied with doing nothing — it insists Travis take action and when he refuses it goes after the perpetrators itself.
A cross between Evil Dead II, The Addams Family and Idle Hands, this picture centres on an appendage gone rogue with brutal and comic results. Like the famous, autonomous hand Thing, it appears capable of acting entirely independently of its former body. It is still able to draw, move around and communicate with its previous owner via text-to-speech software. It is single-handedly stronger than when it was still attached to Travis, fearless and capable of aggressive feats. Though not entirely superhuman, it still shows signs of decay and regret.
Writer/director Matt O'Mahoney successfully finds a balance between the outrageousness of the film’s plot and the slapstick it certainly demands. For the most part he avoids gross-out comedy, sticking to the vengeance plot that is more gory than disgusting. Even though it’s funny, the narrative gets a little lost with the incorporation of a large S&M defender of justice (Dwayne Bryshun). But the general rule in this type of movie is “just go with it.” O'Mahoney also integrates messages about censorship and independent artists into the script, but they fit a little easier with the storyline.
The cast appears to have fun with their roles, taking the film just seriously enough to avoid making it too ridiculous (in the context of a movie about a severed hand seeking revenge, obviously). However, the special effects that bring the hand to life are one of the most impressive elements of the picture. Not surprisingly the movie also took home “Bloodies” for best special FX and screenplay.
Director: Matt O'Mahoney
Starring: Adam Boys, Kasey Ryne Mazak and Ken Tsui
More about Bloody Knuckles, Blood in the Snow, Horror, Matt O, Canadian
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