What do you do when a grim reaper goes rogue? Well, you might hire some slackers from a local bakery to kill him. Well, maybe you shouldn’t, but somebody might. And then said grim reaper would have no choice but to butcher the bakers, obviously.
Butcher the Bakers features a rather simple premise. Those who employ the grim reapers have fired Drag for his malfeasance on the job. Unfortunately, once he is fired, his employers can’t directly stop him themselves. However, since he has gone rogue and is just killing people left and right in order to collect souls for his own obviously evil desires, they need someone to take him out posthaste.
Enter Sam and Martin, a couple of goofballs who work at a bakery and need money. These two already don’t take a day of work at the bakery seriously. So when somebody offers them gold for taking out the grim reaper they accept without giving full weight to their decision. Almost immediately in over their head when they first encounter Drag but manage to fend him off in their first meeting. Now realizing they are in trouble, they head off to prepare to fight Drag. And prepare poorly, they do.
On the other side of town are two women, Pat and Dani who are sent on their own crusade against Drag. Unlike, Sam and Martin, these two take their charge far more seriously and competently. Meanwhile, Drag is also preparing to fend off the interlopers and complete his goal of collecting souls. To accelerate this, he has enlisted the help of his own gang of demonic killers. From here, these three groups head towards each other for an ultimate showdown to save the town and the world.
Butcher the Bakers is certainly an interesting little flick. It is fun and breezy. It is legitimately funny and it revels gleefully in fun horror gore. In some ways, the tone reminded me of the quirkiness of Murder Party. I hope the director has the same sort of upside as Saulnier. The set up is good despite its simplicity. The actors are actually quite decent despite being relatively unheard of. I’ve seen some bad acting from people with far more experience than this group. The seven or eight principal actors did admirably well in this endeavor. Their reactions are generally well timed and not overdone. Their acting even works in most of the more slapstick gore moments.
Now, it is not without its flaws. Butcher the Bakers is a little overdone. The humor can be good but comes with two weaknesses. It occasionally delves out of the realm of tongue in cheek and too much into the territories of winking at the camera and being too juvenile. It also has too many jokes in its execution. There are times when the jokes just never stop. The film does not give the jokes time to breathe because there is another one coming before it has a chance to hit. This is clearly a time when the director just needs a second set of eyes to encourage a few little cuts and timing changes.
Butcher the Bakers Final Thoughts: 3.5/5
Minor gripes aside, Butcher the Bakers is still really a pretty good time. It won’t overthrow Tucker and Dale vs. Evil and the like, but that is ok. I think this will hold up pretty well on return viewings as a fun carefree romp. This also leaves me feeling encouraged to see more work coming out of director Tyler Amm. I think his output will only get better with experience. I’m actually considering checking out his other work, too. Butcher the Bakers is definitely worth a rental when you are looking for something on an evening in. Give it a look at Amazon.