Looking for the ultimate gay-slasher flick for Halloween? “‘Hellbent’ is hot and devilishly suspenseful
A ripped hottie in a devil mask decapitates West Hollywood boys on Halloween eve. Can our heroes an adorable young desk cop, a slutty party-boy, a lovelorn nerd and a drag queen find love and sex before losing their heads?
Will they even survive Halloween?
Writer-director Paul Etheredge-Ouzts has fun queering up the slasher genre. Yes, getting laid or trying to gets you killed!
“Hellbent” overflows with squirting blood, cute boys and a punky soundtrack.
And the muscle-boy murderer is disturbingly erotic.
“He’s a personification of evil but hot evil,” remarks an actor during a featurette interview.
Extras: A half-hour featurette starts out with cast members redundantly discussing clips of the film. But halfway through, the doc delves into cool behind-the-scenes footage.
Instead of using costly prosthetics, Etheredge-Ouzts details how digital effects were employed to simulate gory decapitations. “Hellbent” even digitally altered the geography of WeHo.
From Dallas to WeHo to ‘Hellbent’
“Hellbent” creator Paul Etheredge-Ouzts lives in Los Angeles, but he’s one of us. Now if he’d only revisit Dallas for the sequel.
Who knew the director of “Hellbent” was from North Texas? Although I was born in Fort Worth, I grew up in Dallas M Streets and Lakewood. I consider Big D my hometown.
Hold any interesting jobs in Dallas? Lots. I designed windows for H.D.’s clothing company. I worked for the Dallas Children’s Theatre and Theatre Three. I was sub-contracted to do a bunch of design work for Neiman-Marcus and the Dallas Opera. I also mowed lawns, threw a paper route and waited tables at Uncle Julio’s.
While in Dallas, did you pick up any movie-making skills? During my two years at Skyline High School, I took classes in motion-picture production. Also, I studied directing at Arts Magnet at Booker T. Washington. Also worked on movie crews that came to town, like “JFK” and “Ruby.”
Ever frequent our gay bars? When I turned 21, I worked the front door at The Wave. And during its heyday, I frequented Club One.
Most memorable Halloween in North Texas: In the early ’90s, I designed a huge Halloween party for a Swiss Avenue client. I built huge stone gargoyles one with a 14-foot wingspan with cobwebs and dead roses all very “Dracula’s Castle.” At the time, I was only a kid, but I thought it rocked.
Ever get laid on Halloween? I’m more of a Valentine’s Day kind of guy.
Is “Hellbent2” in the works? I have a kick-ass story ready. Now it all depends on the producers. But I’m in no hurry I have other projects filling my time.
What was the budget like for “Hellbent?” Less than you might think much less.
If you had more money for “Hellbent,” what would you do differently? Tricky question. So many of my creative decisions were influenced by lack of money. If I had more money, I’d have made a different film. And I like the final movie. If pressed to choose, I would want more camera toys.
Scariest movie of all time: For me, “Alien.” Even after seeing a counselor, I had weekly nightmares for a dozen years.
Do you have a Halloween costume planned for this year? I always have big plans for my Halloween costumes. But invariably, I wear whatever I can find in a 10-minute shopping trip to Goodwill.
Were there any on-set boners during production? As on any movie set, there was a fair amount of boning going on.
Anything from your life as a Dallasite inspire “Hellbent?” Thankfully, no.
Daniel A. Kusner
This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition, October 27, 2006.