Horror Movie Review: Death Count (2022)

From director Michael Su, from a screenplay by Michael Merino and Rolfe Kanefsky, comes Death Count. A Saw-inspired, torture-porn horror movie that stars Sarah French, Costas Mandylor and
Michael Madsen.

On face value, Death Count looks like nothing more than your run of the mill torture porn horror with a ‘modern tech’ twist. However, the saying ‘don’t judge a book by its cover’ certainly applies here as Death Count is an entertaining watch.

A group of strangers, all with a connection, wake up to find themselves in individual holding cells. How did they get here? They can’t remember. Who put them there? The Warden. Why are they there? They’re going to play a game. A game that involves them having to mutilate themselves for the enjoyment of a watching audience. Gain enough likes and they’ll move on to the next round. Be the person with the least likes? You’re eliminated and that doesn’t mean going free.

Only one can survive and win the chance for their freedom. Can two cops stop The Warden before the game is over?

There’s a good story here, one that plays out at a decent pace and leads to a reveal that adds some reason and depth to the madness that is taking place in the cells. The characters, how they are connected and what it all means, begins to unravel. All resulting in a satisfying payoff that fits the inherent silliness of the scenario. A silliness that makes this more of a popcorn flick than a thought-provoking lesson. Even with the ‘likes’ scenario that is taking some sly digs at social media and the blood-thirstiness of internet users.

No where does that the film make that clearer than when it comes to the deaths and what deaths they are. Imaginative, graphic and extremely violent. Death Count doesn’t hold back and there are a couple of ‘wow’ moments when it comes to effects. Two in particular; involving blisters and horse steroids, really stand out.

Credit to the cast, who really sell the fear, frustration, anger, terror and pain with such gusto. Sarah French, in particular, is great but Costas Mandylor as The Warden is well worth mentioning too. Yes, it is funny to see the actor best known for his work in several Saw sequels star in a movie like this.

Death Count isn’t what you would call original but that’s fine because it is entertaining in a sickening kind of a way. Ignore the cynical voice in your head that wants to rubbish the movie before you’ve even seen it, it’s well worth checking out. So make sure you do when it is released in North America on July 19th.


Death Count (2022)
  • The Final Score - 7/10
User Review
8.14/10 (11 votes)