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L.A. Beat

Hoodoo Voodoo is a violent and hilarious hoot

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If Kevin Smith and View Askew productions (Dogma, Mallrats, Chasing Amy, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back)  produced an action film, the result would be something like local action film “Hoodoo Voodoo,” which has been screened at the university over the past week and which concludes tonight and tomorrow night at 8 p.m.

The premiere last Thursday, Sept. 21, was sold out and featured most of the cast and crew in the audience, who cheered wildly as every name flashed across the screen.

Hoodoo Voodoo, produced by Rambunxious Skuter Productions Inc.,  directed by Aaron Kurmey and written with star Ryan Hatt and Kevin Johnson,  starts simply enough with a stakeout which is followed by a multiple shooting at the hands of a pair of corrupt cops, who are likable, yet homicidal policemen, who trade Tarantino meets Kevin Smith style  dialogue.

Unfortunately the murders are witnessed by a washed up detective, played by New West Theatre veteran Scott Carpenter, which is where things start to get bloody as the detective records the incident.
Cut to the badlands, and this is where the action begins.

While there is no justifications for the original murders, that doesn’t matter, it’s the action that counts.

You know it is just about gory fun when Carpenter’s detective is cornered by gangsters ( the Syndicate) headed up by a menacing Marek Czuma and his one eyed ninja henchman (Graham Hirano) who tell him they will torture him then proceed to cut off his arm with a sword. He starts screaming like a banshee, even though there is no blood flowing, and the body count begins.


Unfortunately this murder is witnessed by an ex-soldier and the action hero of the show played by Ryann Hatt, who’s menacingly quiet character, a cross between Bruce Willis and Sylvester Stallone, starts picking off the bad guys one at a time, beginning with the tow corrupt cops.

A freelance commando unit (actually Hatt’s former unit) is called in for reinforcements) included among those are their psychotic, scary, bloodthirsty leader, a coke sniffing sniper played by a spooky Jay Whitehead and a blind marksman among others.

A former hooker/ spy comes into the picture, tries to double cross everybody, there is talk of stolen bonds and the body count continues to climb.

 For added comic relief, the hapless chief of police ends up wandering through the badlands, loses most of his clothes in the process and ends up making things a lot worse for everybody.
 Basically, Hoodoo Voodoo is bloody, escapist fun. It has a killer soundtrack of local music including Jesse and the Dandelions, Lustre Creame, Jon Martin and Shaela Miller, an all local cast and crew, some beautiful scenery and a lot of dark humour.
 So check it out either tonight or tomorrow at the Zoo at 8 p.m., then look for it on the film festival circuit.

— By Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor
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