Is the director of Friday the 13th and Conan the Barbarian making a movie about kids who unleash Satan through a metal record? It sounds that way. Marcus Nispel is set to direct a movie called Backmask that “involves paranoia, possession and the paranormal.”
The term ‘backmasking’ is wildly out of date, because it refers to the practice of including messages in songs that could only be heard when the tune is played in reverse. (Usually by spinning a record backwards.) People really got to know backmasking through the paranoid ’80s concept that rock and metal bands would encode demonic messages into songs. (Some bands, starting with the Beatles, actually did backmask messages — many of them long after the ’80s ‘controversy’ over it — but not many of them would open the gates of Hell.)
There’s little real info about the movie, which Kirsten Elms is writing and which is being packaged for sale at Cannes. We’ll probably know more soon, and I could be way off with respect to the meaning of the title and spare description. At least we know that he’s not remaking the reigning king of backmasking-referencing horror films, The Gate, because Alex Winter is already doing that. Meanwhile, what happens if you play Nispel’s movie Pathfinder backwards? I’m going to try that now; if my next articles start endorsing a critical re-appraisal of the second Transformers movie, you know something really went wrong. [Deadline]
EDIT: I’d written and published this when I saw that Bloody Disgusting had a lot more info on this last week — sorry for not noticing that earlier, guys. BD offered the following plot description, which does in fact involve a record played backwards:
During a sex, drugs, and rock-fueled party, six small-town teenagers find an old vintage record and decide to play it backwards in order to listen for any subliminal/satanic messages. Lo and behold, a seemingly malevolent spirit quickly infiltrates the group, wreaking havoc as it moves from one body to another. Eventually, however, it’s revealed that the spirit in question is actually trying to convey a message….and that the real source of horror isn’t particularly paranormal, but rather something (or someone) much closer to home.