If you love Foo Fighters and have a soft spot for the “splattertoons” corner of horror, you won’t want to miss “Studio 666.”
No, it’s not very good. None of these guys are actors and the chap they hired to direct it made “Hatchet III” for Pete’s sake. But there are scruffy, shambolic laughs, giggles amped-up by the band — especially founder/lead-singer Dave Grohl — playing exaggerated versions of themselves.
And where else are you going to see canceled creeper Jeff Garlin (“The Goldbergs”) play a Satanic record producer?
Studio 666″ is a Foo Fighters horror comedy about the band setting up shop in a haunted mansion in Encino to cut their tenth LP. Grohl is “musically constipated,” blocked, not realizing he’s composing songs he’s already written, searching youtube tutorials on creating power chords, grasping for inspiration.
He sits at the keyboard and starts a ballad, and just when we see his eyes take on a flash of “EUREKA,” just when we recognize the tune, a spectral Lionel Ritchie materializes, expresses a few words of sympathy about how hard it is to “find inspiration,” and then goes OFF with “but that’s MY f—–g SONG. Get your own…NERD.”
Yeah, “Hello.” It’s kind of like that.
Grohl plays a “raging a—-le” version of himself, a diva who orders the other five Fighters — Taylor Hawkins, Pat Smear, Rami Jaffee, Nate Mendel, Chris Shiftlett — around, demands that they move into this house that they’re recording in and drives the road crew nuts as he positions and repositions the drums (he was Nirvana’s drummer, remember) to get that “perfect” sound.
“Did you just say ‘NO’ to DAVE GROHL? I’m a f—–g ROCK STAR. I get the best parking wherever I go…for all ETERNITY! That’s the RULE!”
“There goes my hero” indeed.
But stuff starts to go wrong when their crew chief gets fried setting up their gear. Nobody — not the band, not the too-too-friendly neighbor (Whitney Cummings) who figures she could be a backup singer, and auditions unprompted for the part (hilarious), not the fanboy GrubHub delivery dude (Will Forte) who has “a demo” — is safe.
The many murders committed by whatever haunts this place involve things like a charcoal grill and a chainsaw as Grohl makes the journey from “raging” yo- know-what to “possessed” raging you-know-what.
Grohl’s funny in interviews and TV ads, and that’s kind of enough for him to carry this off. His acting tends towards mugging — eyebrow raising, overly obvious “indicators” showing us he’s seen/noticed/been-surprised-by something. He’s still the most polished member of the musician-actor cast, and he’s also the one having the most fun.
Fake-vomiting, you say?
“No more oat meal beer bongs for Dave!”
Cummings and Forte deliver, and keen-eyed horror fans may notice one of the recording engineers, who wrote the title tune for this movie but long ago made Jamie Leigh Curtis a star.
The whole package is more foul-mouthed fun than your typical dark and grim and more self-serious Rob Zombie rocker-to-slasher filmmaker outing.
Keep your expectations low — a 30 minute+ unending instrumental is meant to be their epic, “like ‘2112’ times 2112!” — and your tolerance high for a bunch of rich 50something rock stars messing around making a movie and “Studio 666” might be the monster track you’ve been waiting for.
Rating: R for strong bloody violence and gore, pervasive language, and sexual content
Cast: Dave Grohl, Taylor Hawkins, Pat Smear, Rami Jaffee, Nate Mendel, Chris Shiftlett, Whitney Cummings, Jeff Garlin and Will Forte.
Credits: Directed by BJ McDonnell, scripted by Jeff Buhler and Rebecca Hughes. An Open Road release.
Running time: 1:46
Idk why Dave Grohl needs to make a Foo Fighters movie. Too much money perhaps? They made a few great short/MV before. Learn to Fly MV was Airplane-funny. And the MV for Everlong is still the best ‘dream within a dream’ short film/movie. Yes, better than Inception, if you ask me.
As a lark, perhaps? I’d have hired a better director. It ain’t just about the power chords and slaughter.