Gags The Clown is a pseudo-found footage horror film following four groups of people, who are all reacting to the ominous sightings of Gags the Clown (Eric Heuvelman). First, there is reporter Heather Duprey (Lauren Ashley Carter) and her cameraman Dale (Wyatt Kuether), driving around Green Bay, WI hoping to pick up the clown’s trail. Then there’s local celebrity and podcaster Charles Wright (Aaron Christensen), who has had enough of the clown’s creepy presence over the past few weeks. As such, he is hunting him, despite no public evidence of Gags harming anyone exists.
Police officers Jake Gruber (Evan Gamble) and Chrissy Renard (Tracy Perez) are answering calls about possible sightings or incidents involving people dressed as clowns. Finally, Chrissy’s stepdaughter Sara (Halley Sharp), along with her friends Chris (Squall Charlson) and Tyler (Michael Gideon Sherry) plan to prank some bystanders by dressing up as the clown and running out from the dark.
“…a pseudo-found footage horror film following four groups of people, who are all reacting to the ominous sightings of Gags the Clown…”
Gags The Clown is based on co-writer and director Adam Krause’s short film Gags. Both of which are based on real-life clown sightings that took place in the Green Bay area. As much as there is to like, there is a rather glaring issue. That problem is the style of the movie. It intercuts between the news camera, actual news footage, video recorded by cell phones, security cameras, and police bodycams. The problem is that switching over from one kind of camera to another is more jarring than anything else. It is hard to discern a rhyme or reason for the type of camera being utilized. The found footage angle can work wonderfully at times, I think here, it is more of a hindrance. This style needs to justify cutting to a new camera, and the movie fails to do that.
The other issue is the writing of the characters. Every person has one trait to them, and that is all. Heather is sick of doing these clown stories but is determined to prove herself. Charles Wright believes too much of his own crap and buys into his own hype. The cops are overwhelmed but concerned. Sarah almost has an arc, with her eventually realizing her friends are stupid jerks, but that is as close as anyone comes to depth.
"…an unceasing aura of nightmare-inducing terror permeating every second..."