100 Tears (2007)
--Review by Nic Brown--
Some people love clowns. To them, they may symbolize happy memories of childhood, the circus, and fun. Other people don’t like them so much. In fact, many people find them disturbing to look at. Horror has capitalized on the duality of the clown for years. Stephen King's “It” featured a monster that most often appeared as the clown Pennywise. Poltergeist had its possessed clown doll, and of course there is the B-Movie classic: Killer Clowns From Outer Space. Now writer Joe Davison and director Marcus Koch have added their own twist to evil clown mythos with their film 100 Tears.
A vicious homicide at a homeless shelter draws the attention of tabloid journalists Jennifer Stevenson (Georgia Chris) and Mark Webb (Joe Davison, the film's writer). When Jen and Mark begin investigating the killings they quickly move ahead of the police after they find that the killer may have been dressed as a clown. This leads them to discover that these may not be the first killings either. In fact, this may be the latest in a series of bloody slayings attributed to the Tear Drop killer, which started 20 years ago and has been moving up and down the coast, loosely following a traveling circus.
The killer, Gurdy the clown (Jack Amos), was in fact, once part of that circus and now he follows it on a quest. He's looking for the woman he loved and the daughter he never knew, and he's killing anyone who gets in his way. When he finds his daughter, Christine (Raine Brown), Gurdy discovers that she is a chip off the old pshyco-killer block. She’s been killing people in her own maniacal way as well, and she is all too happy to join her father in his murderous spree. Will Jen and Mark find out Gurdy's secret and will they be able to stop the two killers before more people are slain? One things for certain, whatever happens, it won't be a laughing matter.
100 Tears is an excellent independent horror film. Jack Amos is outstandingly creepy and frightening as Gurdy the clown. This killer makes no snappy one-liners or jokes, in fact, he doesn't speak at all. Gurdy simply smiles in an unnerving, emotionless way and goes about his work, which is hacking people into pieces with a giant meat cleaver. Raine Brown is also fantastic in her role as Christine, Gurdy's homicidal daughter. She, unlike her father, revels in the killings and screams with joy as she slays her victims. Gurdy's quite, methodical nature complements Christine's manic energy and the two work well together. The journalists Jen and Mark are also a good match and their pairing contrasts well against the killers.
100 Tears is also a truly gruesome spectacle to view. Gurdy's weapon of choice, the giant meat cleaver, sends heads and limbs and internal organs flying in nearly every scene. The body count is also impressive, and some of the murders are most disturbing in their brutality, this is thanks to first rate, old-school, gore effects involving gallons of fake blood and yards of latex entrails. This does mean that the film's wider appeal may be limited, but fans of horror and gore will not be disappointed. So before you make that trip to the circus, check out 100 Tears, you won’t look at clowns the same way again.