Kruel is a horror/thriller feature length movie about a psychotic killer who masquerades as an ice cream man in order to get closer to the objects of his affection.
Director: Robert Henderson
Writers: Robert Henderson (story), Robert Henderson
Stars: Kierney Nelson, Dakota Morrissiey, J.T. Chinn, Adam Vernier
Runtime: 96 min
Robert Henderson’s Kruel is an unusual movie for a few reasons. You have a horror/thriller about a deranged ice cream man, which screams horror themes all over the place, but the film seems to be very content in not truly exploring the actual horrific elements that are right in front of its face. That is not necessarily a bad thing, but it will deter horror fans from appreciating the film a little more.
While it does not want to accept its horror elements, it seems to also not want to solidly embrace any specific genre. At times, it is a slow, brooding drama while at other times, it is a pure thriller. Yet at other times, it goes into the romantic subplots. The film accomplishes all of this while barely running over 90 minutes. Of course, the crew could have easily cut 20 minutes out of the film and it would have been better for it.
While it is far from perfect, Kruel is the prototypical low-budget film with its typical flaws. A few of the major roles are played in a fashion that I could have done without. Dakota Morrissiey as Jo O’Hare’s boyfriend is about as stiff as a 2×4. Jo’s father is also lackluster in his role.
On the other hand though, actress/producer Kierney Nelson is simply stunning to look at and does a very nice job in her role. This beauty is extremely easy on the eyes, which makes the film much more watchable, but she also has some nice acting chops. She is much more than simply an amazing body.
J.T. Chinn as Willie definitely had his moments and was convincing at his role. I would have liked to see a little more of him in his best role as the ice cream man Willy Cool, but the film seemed to be content with showing him without the makeup for the majority of the film. Chinn nails the creepy character when you first see him inside the ice cream truck. As we get to see more of him our of makeup, his character is far less creepy.
Basically, Kruel is a decent film. It is not horrible, but it is not ground breaking outside of the roles played by Chinn and Nelson, both of whom I hope to see more of. After their roles in this one though, they should have suitors lining up with scripts for the services.