Netflix had tried for years to convince me that I needed to see Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon. I stuck to my guns and told them, “No way Netflix, I don’t like slashers, Robert Englund doesn’t do anything of quality anymore, and not even Zelda Rubinstein can convince me to watch this!!!” I was very emphatic.
Then my friend Six said, “YOU WILL WATCH THIS MOVIE IN ALL IT’S AWESOMENESS!” to which I replied, “hookay, fine,” but I remained dubious.
I owe him a great deal of thanks.
Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon is truly a delight. It is a wonderful homage to all the slashers of the 80s and the fantastic casts of characters that made them wonderful. Nathan Baesel (who plays Leslie Vernon) is charming, goofy, and at turns frightening. One of the best performances in the movie is The Walking Dead‘s Scott Wilson, who plays Leslie’s mentor. I think one of the most chilling moments in the movie was watching him laugh and joke, then go stonefaced and give dead-eyes. In that one moment you have no questions as to whether or not this is a man capable of killing..
This movie plays with the genre, and without warning goes a completely different direction with no apologies. I loved playing ‘spot the easter egg.’ and find the movie, character, and even musical references. It is joyful and fun, and if (like me) you grew up watching Michael, Freddy, and Jason, give Leslie a shot. You will thank me for it.