If there was a way to launch a side project in the most perfect fashion, Dave Grohl has just done it.
The former Nirvana drummer most famous for being the Foo Fighters front man dipped his toes into the horror movie scene with the thoroughly enjoyable Studio 666.
I went in with a bar set so low for this movie that it would have been easier to step over it than attempt to crawl under. But I wanted to see what these musical veterans could serve up on the silver screen. It was 108 minutes of gore, music and comedy and it far exceeded my expectations.
I don’t want to spoil too much of Studio 666, so this won’t serve as a review, rather it will hopefully encourage you to check it out for the brief seven (!!!) days it’s in cinemas.
Here’s the red band (read: full-of-gore) trailer:
The premise of the movie is pretty simple. Band needs to make album number 10, band has run out of inspiration, band lock themselves in a haunted house to write said album, manager is mad, supernatural beings emerge, people die. Classic.
Studio 666 opens strong. If blood and guts ain’t your thing, this movie won’t be, either.
The band head to a dilapidated mansion in Encino, Los Angeles to record their 10th album. The mansion is, as realtor Barb says, to die for. Writer’s block sets in and the band start drawing inspiration from the horrific scenes the walls have seen; they just don’t exactly know this at the start. But as the blood sheds, the inspiration flows. Jump scares ensue.
If we pause for a second, it needs to be highlighted that last week, the Foo Fighters released a song under the name Dream Widow. “March of the Insane” is 3 minutes and 19 seconds of thrashy metal perfection. It fucking slaps. The band also revealed they’d be plotting an entire album under the Dream Widow moniker to coincide with Studio 666. The movie features a lot of Dream Widow. And the movie made this whole ‘thing’ make so much sense.
We have a cameo from rock legend Steve Vai (well, his hands do some shredding) and horror god John Carpenter, and while it’s a lot about the music, there’s more to it than that.
The band can actually act. I mean, there’s no supporting actor Oscars up for grabs, but all six of them were fine. Grohl was impressive – he’s funnier than I thought and there were more than a handful of giggles coming from the crowd. But this is where I remain unsure. I like Foo Fighters, I love metal and horror is my favourite movie genre. I’m not overly convinced your average punter would enjoy Studio 666 as much as I did, but Foo Fighters are a household name, and this is the lowbrow horror flick with bad jokes, slasher-like murders (creative ones, too), not-quite subtle references to occultism and the Necronomicon, perfect music and relatable themes (such as the struggle with remaining creative and the battle with our inner demons) that we all need.
The devil rules all of rock ‘n roll.
Studio 666 is out February 24 for one week only. While you’re here, why not check out all of the horror, sci-fi and fantasy movies hitting cinemas this year. Also, Foo Fighters are currently in Australia and the musicians-cum-actors will be playing at Geelong’s GMHBA Stadium on March 4 to a sold out crowd.