Ringside Cinema

Wrestlemaniac (2006)

Finally, a wrestling-themed horror film. Minus all the things that make horror films good. Sadly, the wrestling concept is the least campiest thing about this movie. At least it stars a killer in a lucha libre mask! Although to be fair, it’s probably the least intimidating lucha libre mask ever. WCW’s Ciclope had a much scarier mask. Read on if you dare!

The Storyline
The characters named above in Claudio’s IMDB description are the warped interpretation of a modern day Mystery Inc., if depicted as the worst possible types of human beings you can imagine existing, let alone being on a road trip with. Seriously, Alfonse is Fred, now the douchiest of guys with horrible facial hair and those annoying cowboy hats Shawn Michaels would wear during the unnecessary revitalization of DX, when it was just a sad PG shell of its former self. The starlets, Debbie, does Daisy, and Dallas, are three over-sexed, one-dimensional versions of Daphne. They seriously give porn actresses a bad name. Velma doesn’t exist in this world, in any way, shape, or form. Jimbo is Shaggy, the stoner we all know him to be. And Steve, the lucha-loving stereotypical fat dork is your manifestation of Scooby Doo in human form. Five minutes in and you’re already rooting for the killer and hope that none of these people make it out alive.

The owner of the desolate gas station likes to welcome people wearing a wrestling mask of El Diablo Negro, which unfortunately is not the name of the demented masked murderer we later meet. This is when we learn of Steve’s love for lucha libre, as he dons his own mask, that he just happens to carry on him, of El Tigre. The make-believe character in the Tecmo World Wrestling video game for Nintendo? After learning of El Mascarado’s legend to be true, Steve marks out harder than Brock Lesnar Guy. No explanation is given as to why El Mascarado, a deranged killer, was sent to live in a small town instead of a psychiatric ward, or prison.

It doesn’t take long for the group to set up camp and start shooting their porno. Despite, being in an abandoned Mexican saloon, Alphonse decides to role play as the plumber, or the cable guy. I can’t remember. Point is, calling on either one of these professionals does not make sense in an abandoned Mexican saloon. Boobs are shown, but not from the girl this movie has clearly been pushing for you to want to see, Dallas.

Seriously, the movie was simply a starring vehicle for Leyla Milani’s entire body. Look at the above picture. Who hides like they’re in stirrups bracing themselves for a pap smear? I get that the “male gaze” is a thing and all, but son of a bitch, even I was starting to get offended. The tracking shots of her ass in daisy dukes ultimately pays off when she gets her shorts caught on something and they tear off like they’re tear-away sweats, and nothing like denim. Don’t worry, she has panties on. Surprisingly, it’s not a thong. She also has on a sheer white tank top which she gets wet in the most contrived way possible, by hiding out in an oil drum filled with water. If she’s gonna die she’s gonna die objectified, Goddammit. But Dallas isn’t just tits and ass, after all, this girl is supposed to be our heroine, the one that makes it until the end. She single-handedly fixes the van that happened to break down on them while they were making the movie. Did I mention she does all this, plus runs and then fights the killer all while wearing stripper heels, as my girlfriend matter-of-factly referred to them as.

Spoiler alert: She dies. They all die. Making us hate these characters from the beginning helped soften the blow.

The Wrestling
You can’t make a movie about a murdering masked wrestler without throwing in  few wrestling holds. This movie does that and even goes a step further by introducing audiences to the rules and regulations of lucha libre, although half assed. Having stumbled upon some old audio recordings, Steve utilizes his broken Spanish and learns that El Mascarado still abides by the rules of lucha libre. Which doesn’t make sense if he had previously gouged an opponent’s eyes out. Clearly, this man is a rudo. Since El Mascarado’s gimmick seems to be ripping people’s faces off to decorate the inside of his Ray Finkle room of death, the only way to stop him is to unmask him. This, Steve reasons, will bring him ultimate humiliation and he will never wrestle again. Tell that to Averno, Shocker, and Black Warrior, Steve. Plus, everybody knows masks are in play only during luchas de apuestas.

The most wrestling we see actually displayed by El Mascarado is when he fights Steve’s alter ego, El Tigre. Steve spears him into the wall, but it goes downhill from there as El Mascarado takes him down and snaps his arm using an armbar of sorts. El Mascarado then lays the boots to him, as only a wrestler could, by “stomping” on his stomach. You know it’s bad when The Rock’s kicks look more realistic than this. In typical lucha style, El Mascarado takes to the top of one of the nearby oil drums that are make-shift ring posts and takes flight. And then rips Steve’s face off.

El Mascarado’s bout with Dallas is more of an extreme rules/Attitude Era type of match. Foreign objects are definitely in play. This includes a 2×4 with nails sticking out, which El Mascarado takes to the back. And a metal pipe with a jagged end that Dallas just happens to impale El Mascarado with. And he still no-sells it! Who is this guy, Davey Richards? He ends up killing Dallas and adds insult to injury by taking off in the van she had just fixed. No doubt looking for that next booking.

The Wrestlers
Aside from the unknown (well, to me) sepia-toned old school luchadores wrestling in the opening sequence, Rey Misterio Sr. is the titular masked maniac. You might know him as the uncle of Rey Mysterio (Jr.).

Star Rating: *1/2

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