It’s surprising that a disco-era horror period piece isn’t about vampires (disco sucks! Anyone is free to run with that idea, but be sure and credit us).
From the opening credits, a disco version of Flight of the Bumblebees, we know we’re in polyester / platform territory, a strange and foreign land dominated by indeterminate accents (Quebecers passing themselves off as native New Yorkers and Montreal, Quebec passing itself off as New York) .
Discopath has to have one of the most original premises in horror history: Duane Lewis, a hash slinger in a local diner, is tormented by his father’s recording studio electrocution death (a passing that was marked by the boom, boom, boom pounding of a foot pedal on a bass drum). Lewis goes berserk when he hears a backbeat (I’m tryin’ to get away from the music!”) and murders a woman in a Brooklyn nightclub. The NYPD is immediately on the case: “this is no longer a disco, it’s a crime scene!”, which has to be one of the more memorable lines in recent years.
Unfortunately, Lewis has absconded with the club owner’s ID and is making a run for the border: as luck would have it, bound for Montreal. It’s there he assumes an identity as “Martin”, feigns deafness and works as an audio / visual tech (you’d think his disability would’ve come up in the job interview) in…wait for it…an all-girls private school!!! Cue the short shorts and the plaid skirts…
There’s a vinyl murder that gives new meaning to the phrase “deep album cut” and gradually NYPD and Montreal police put two and two together and get four-on-the-floor hi-hat beats; their suspect is disco-mad and it’s the music that’s drivin’ him crazy.
Discopath, or Discopathe as it’s known on IMDb is a fun, giallo-inspired bit of Canuck horror with some genuine scares, an unforgettable premise and killer special effects from Remy Couture.
***1/2 (out of 5)