Snoop Dogg's Hood of Horror
Murder was the case that they gave me
Hizzle foshizzle, my bizzle. Yeah, I have no idea what I just said, but Snoop Dogg might. I don't listen to hip hop or rap as I much prefer metal, hardcore, and rock, but Snoop has transcended his genre and become a household name thanks to his “reality” show and his other projects outside of the music world. A fan of comic books and scary movies, he's already stepped into the horror world, starring in the movie Bones. It comes as no surprise that he would star and contribute music to another horror movie in the same vein as Tales From The Crypt and Creepshow.
Hood of Horror is a 2006 trio of horror movies with an urban bent. The movie starts with an animated short that shows Devon (Snoop Dogg) selling his soul to a demon to bring back his dead sister, whom Devon may or may not have killed. In return, Devon becomes a Hound of Hell and narrates our stories. There are animated shorts connecting each story.
The first story, entitled Crossed Out, stars Daniella Alonso (The Hills Have Eyes 2, Wrong Turn 2) as a graffiti artist named Posie. As a young girl, she saw her father murder her mother, before turning the gun on himself. She is chased by a gang led by Noel Gugliemi (Training Day, The Fast And The Furious). Posie escapes, but is grabbed by the mysterious and deformed Derelict (Danny Trejo, Machete, Con Air). He grants her special powers in order to change the hood for the better, but she uses the powers to cross out the tags of other people, thus killing them in gruesome fashion. Seeing that she is using the power only to kill, Derelict takes the power away and raises her zombified victims to gain their revenge.
The truth about Kool-Aid
The concept for this first story is decent, though for some reason I feel like I've heard it before. Daniella Alonso puts on a good performance and it's fun to see Danny Trejo in just about anything. Even Billy Dee Williams shows up for a brief appearance. The kills are pretty excellent in a horrifyingly funny sort of way. For example, a gang member trips and impales themselves on a 40. Now that's a creative way to kill someone. The makeup and effects used look good and are convincing. The short format did hurt the overall product as we're not really given enough time to connect with the characters and the story is rushed and a bit nonsensical. It's not really clear why Posie is given powers and why she decided to just murder the fuck out of people. It's not great, but it has it's moments.
The second story is the Scumlord, starring Anson Mount as the racist Tex Woods Jr. and Ernie Hudson (Ghostbusters, The Substitute) as Roscoe. Tex has inherited an apartment from his father, whom he murdered. The apartment is inhabited by Roscoe and 3 black veterans. Tex and his girlfriend Tiffany make the veterans' lives hell. Roscoe and crew take out their revenge on their slumlord with bloody results.
"Okay! George W. Bush ISN'T the greatest president of all time!"
This one probably had the most entertaining story with the most disappointing ending. It's not a horror story and I'm not exactly sure what they were thinking. The acting is good and the story has some funny moments, but it's all lost with such a weak ending. It's even more confusing when Snoop Dogg's character just kind of shows up at the end. It comes out of nowhere and is really unnecessary. It's a shame because the story was good only to be ruined by half-assing it on the horror front.
The final story Rapsody Askew is about the rise and fall of a rapped named SOD (Pooch Hall, Heist, Stomp The Yard 2). He prays to become a famous rapper and meets Quon (Aries Spears, MAD TV). At an awards show party, SOD is confronted by a woman that shows SOD the horrible person he has become since cutting his deal with God. This includes greed, statutory rape, and having Quon murdered by their bodyguard Jersey (WCW's Diamond Dallas Page) in an effort to become more famous. A zombie Quon appears before SOD, taunting him and driving him insane. Jersey comes into the room, but does not see Quon. What will happen?
You got a little something on your...eh, nevermind
Rapsody Askew is more of a psychological horror movie than anything else. It's cool to see Aries Spears in a semi-serious role, though it is a little weird to hear him rapping and dropping the n-word when you're so used to seeing him on MAD TV. It was also fun to see Diamond Dallas Page in a role other than a wrestler. The makeup used for the reanimated Quon is top-notch. The story itself is standard stuff with nothing particularly scary going on. You pretty much know exactly what will happen from start to finish.
The film ends in another animated short where all the main characters are taken down to Hell. Hood of Horrors does not reach the quality of Tales From The Hood, but it's better than Nite Tales. Each story has it's moments, but they're nothing spectacular. They are helped along by including well-known serious actors and some good makeup and effects. The animation is very good and reminds me of Todd McFarlane's Spawn animated series. Overall, the movie is watchable, but not unmissable.