Stitches Movie Review

Written by Joel Harley

DVD released by Kaleidoscope Home Entertainment


Directed by Conor McMahon
Written by Conor McMahon, David O'Brien
2012, 86 minutes, Rated 18 (UK)
DVD released on 11th February 2012

Ross Noble as Richard 'Stitches' Grindle
Tommy Knight as Tom
Gemma-Leah Devereux as Kate
Valerie Spelman as Mum


Ross Noble makes the unlikeliest of transitions from stand-up comedy to slasher movie villainy in Stitches, a raucous cross between IT, A Nightmare on Elm Street and The Inbetweeners. Ross Noble plays Richard 'Stitches' Grindle, a children's entertainer accidentally murdered by a party of tremendously obnoxious brats. But not even death can put a stop to Noble's non-stop noise – soon the clown has returned, set on bloody vengeance.

At the top of Stitches' to do (in) list is Tom, now all grown up and looking a lot like Tommy Knight, of The Sarah Jane Adventures fame. Those only familiar with the actor from his Doctor Who spin-off days will be shocked at the behaviour in Stitches. Stitches' victims are so lewd that their house party makes American Pie look positively tame by comparison. One joke (involving urine, a balcony and a cup) is blatantly stolen from American Pie 2, too. If only the American Pie franchise had ended with the lot of them being slaughtered by a killer clown – it makes the kids' atrocious attitudes so much easier to swallow. You might even begin to warm to some of them by the end.

Entertainingly nasty as the youths may be, Ross Noble is the star of the show. Grindle is too sympathetic and funny to ever seem threatening or scary, but watching him slaughter the young lads and lasses before him is a lot of fun – like Freddy Krueger in his prime. Those who prefer their horror with less comedy will find less to appreciate in Stitches, but others will have a riot with it. It's rude, crude, incredibly violent and massively gory. Again, the gore is too over the top to seem scary,  but it's impressively imagining. Heads are kicked off, testicles removed, innards outed, brains scooped and faces impaled with umbrellas. Not even the family cat escapes Noble's wrath. I haven't had this much sheer fun with a movie since Hobo With a Shotgun.

However much I loved it, Stitches is bound to polarise audiences. It's an unashamedly silly film, suffering from some of the worst (best) post-kill puns this side of a Roger Moore James Bond. Even Freddy Krueger would be ashamed of Stitches' one-liners. Like Noble himself, the film does have a tendency to ramble on a bit. It's flabby in places, especially during the last twenty minutes or so. There's also the matter of a little television programme called Psychoville. Were it not for Reece Shearsmith's terrifying Mister Jelly (a good guy – but a frightening bastard all the same) Stitches would be a great creation. As it is, he's merely an amusing one, hamstrung by a better variation on the same ideas.

Still, Stitches is one of the most fun movies of the year, coming from the most unlikely of sources. It may be flabby and flawed in places, but it's a truly Noble effort.

Video, Audio and Special Features:

Video, audio and special features will not be graded as this was a screener.


Movie: 4 Stars


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Joel Harley
Staff Reviewer
Haribo fiend, Nicolas Cage scholar and frequently functioning alcoholic. These are just some of the words which can be used to describe Joel Harley. The rest, he uses to write film criticism for Horror DNA and a variety of websites and magazines. Sometimes he manages to do so without swearing.
Other articles by this writer



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