Venom

Rated R 2005

Sadly, this movie has nothing to do with either the '80s metal band or the symbiotically clad Spider-Man foe; instead, it's an ill-timed slasher set during rainy season in a Louisiana bayou. When a well-meaning but badly scarred trucker (Rick Cramer) tries to rescue a voodoo woman from a car accident, he inadvertently ends up opening her magic briefcase filled with evil computer-generated snakes containing the sins of various dead people. Naturally, they bite him and he becomes a zombiefied mass of walking evil, stalking and killing the local teens with a crowbar. Notable among those who oppose him are the voodoo woman's granddaughter Cece (Meagan Good) and local burger waitress Eden (Agnes Bruckner). Supposedly based on a video game called Backwater that has yet to be released, Venom boasts some nifty atmospheric cinematography by Steve Mason (BASEketball), but for an R-rated movie it really skimps on the gore. The final showdown between sole survivor and killer is sufficiently well done that you wonder why the rest didn't measure up.

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