With both Scary Movie 5 and the Marlon Wayans vehicle A Haunted House making brief runs in theaters earlier this year (before getting shipped off to DVD shelves and video-on-demand sites), audiences may not be in the mood for yet another horror movie parody—especially considering actual horror movies The Conjuring and You're Next are currently in theaters, legitimately scaring the hell out of people.
Cult comedy fans will most likely be the ones checking out Hell Baby. As you can probably tell from the title, a satanic infant is involved with this. It gets inside the belly of an expecting mom (Leslie Bibb) once she and her husband (Rob Corddry) move inside a demonic fixer-upper in New Orleans.
Unlike the aforementioned thriller takeoffs, Hell Baby eschews making fun of the most recent fright fests—which will help the movie from looking dated in two years' time—in favor of taking shots at more traditional, clichéd horror-movie tropes. Basically, the movie is a series of hit-or-miss gags with the cast of familiar-faced sketch-comedy players (Keegan-Michael Key, Riki Lindhome, Paul Scheer, Rob Huebel) ad-libbing their way through the gory absurdity of it all.
It turns out Hell Baby is one of two scary-movie sendups hitting theaters this fall that features members of the former MTV sketch group The State. (The other one is the potty-minded creature feature Bad Milo!) This one is written and directed by State alumni and renowned script doctors Thomas Lennon and Robert Ben Garant, who both show up doing their best Father Guido Sarducci impressions as two chain-smoking, Satan-fighting priests.
While not a lot of Hell Baby works (recurring gags involving a naked old lady and constant trips to a po' boy restaurant lose their silly steam), the movie does seem destined to be the sort of acquired-taste howler that will most likely attract people who recognize how ridiculous horror movies can be—and, of course, stoners.