Remember Jesus Rinzoli’s cheesy 1970s slasher classic ‘Hiker Meat’? No? Well, that’s probably because it doesn’t exist. Still, that hasn’t stopped London-based conceptual artist Jamie Shovlin from remaking it, and assembling footage from the set into this diverting behind-the-scenes doc. If you’re confused, that’s because the project is intended to blur the line between what we've watched and what, thanks to genre formula and cultural expectation, we simply feel that we’ve watched.
Writer Mike Harte conceived the screenplay for ‘Hiker Meat’ – a lurid tale of teen misfits getting slaughtered one by one at a rural commune – as an homage to exploitation cinema in the vein of ‘Friday the 13th’. After Shovlin initially ‘filmed’ it as a montage of stock excerpts from a vast number of vintage horror films, the next step was to mount it as a full-scale, Ti West-style retro production.
Like a sort of super-meta DVD extra, ‘Rough Cut’ follows the cast and crew to the Lake District (doubling for sunny California) as they realise this pastiche-of-a-pastiche-of-a-pastiche. It’s clever stuff, brimming with B-movie affection – though one senses ‘Hiker Meat’ itself would be more fun.