This is not a prequel to Slaughterhouse-Five but the first film from Simon Pegg and Nick Frost’s production company Stolen Picture. A horror-comedy set at an If….-inspired boarding school, Slaughterhouse Rulez is iffy in more ways than one.
Directed by Kula Shaker frontman Crispian Mills, this Attack the Block-style creature feature takes a long time to get to the point: posh students getting Eton alive. First we have to sit through an hour of tired St Trinian’s shtick, made watchable by Michael Sheen and supplement salesman Simon Pegg. Nick Frost also cameos as almost the exact same drug dealer he played in Attack the Block, while Margot Robbie literally phones in her performance over Skype.
The creature sequences are fun and their emergence from a man-made sinkhole adds a moral about the dangers of fracking, although “boring” might be more appropriate. Hack characterisation and glib execution make it hard to care and easy to miss Edgar Wright’s involvement in Pegg and Frost’s work, much the same as in Paul.
Noisy rather than witty, Slaughterhouse Rulez is ultimately sunk by a dearth of interesting characters or new ideas. All in all a shaky start for Stolen Picture, but that’s the way the protein cookie crumbles.