100 PERCENT GEORGE A. ROMERO, 0 PERCENT ZOMBIE
Bruiser (2000) US/France
A film written and directed by the exalted Mr. Romero, this is not a movie with gore and zombies and the only monsters are the good ole' human kind - those ruthless enough in life to stomp on whomever they please to get exactly what they want. And they cause the breakdown and subsequent revenge moves of people-pleaser Henry Creedlow (Jason Flemyng).
We get a brief backstory of Henry - married to a woman who is always disappointed in him no matter how hard he tries, trying to afford to finish a sprawling expensive house which she demands, working constantly without proper credit at a fashion magazine called Bruiser trying to please a boss that is never satisfied, and trusting his best friend with his future in the stock market.
And of course every one of those people betray him. His only friend and one he can trust is the estranged wife of his boss - who must stay with him, otherwise he pretty much keeps the magazine that she really has worked much harder for than he has. In other words, pretty typical business, typical people.
And in typical style, Henry gets betrayed - his boss is messing with his wife, his best friend has been stealing money from him. Feeling helpless and hopeless his only friend seems to be the boss' wife. Her artistic outlet is making masks of people and she makes one for him. After finding out about all the betrayers in his life he wakes up and looks in the mirror - only to find that the white mask has become his face. He scratches at it and it bleeds as if it's his skin.
From there we have a progression of Henry manning up and getting revenge on everyone - although it's not really all that courageous, considering no one knows what he looks like now. One by one he confronts and eliminates those who've wronged him and when that's done, his face is now his own again. That's kind of heavy-handed George. Not bad mind you, just not that subtle.
The movie ends we assume years later as Henry is now a long-haired mailroom employee somewhere, and the way he goes through the office we assume he's happy to do it - until he passes a boardroom where the boss is reaming some employees and, seeing Henry watching starts to yell at him. Henry takes it for a few seconds then responds by turning his head - the white mask is back.
The moral to the story? Stick to what you know because although this movie wasn't horrible George neither was it effective or very interesting and the 'moral' part was pretty murky. Sorry.
Hello to all those faithfully reading and hopefully enjoying this effort to make even the worst horror movie more watcha... aw, screw that - I'm not that good. If a movie makes you cringe because yet another batch of unlikable teens that are pushing 30 are inching toward their deaths, having a party no one does anywhere ever, a paranormal movie is boring you to tears with unending pans of empty rooms, or thanks to CGI technology when people finally bite it, their blood squirts everywhere except on the victim, the ground, the people next to them... you're in good company and this is the right place for you.