‘A suburban nightmare’
The Ice Cream Truck is a 2017 comedy horror film written and directed by Megan Freels Johnston (Rebound). It stars Deanna Russo, Dana Gaier, John Redlinger and Emil Johnsen.
Mary’s husband gets relocated for work which allows her to move back to her suburban hometown. As her family ties up loose ends back home, Mary moves into their new house all alone and… waits.
Yet in this idealistic world, something seems very odd. The Ice Cream Man, a symbol of youth and good times, starts killing some of her neighbours. Mary soon learns that the suburbs are scarier in more ways that she ever remembered…
The Ice Cream Truck has good cinematography and very strong acting on Emil Johnsen’s part. However, nothing else works, especially the script, which is devoid of a clear purpose and relies heavily on cinematic logic as opposed to real world logic. The acting by everyone else suffices, the direction is just there, and yet the whole thing feels limp and desperately derivative.
Meanwhile, the film’s score “borrows” heavily from Carpenter’s Halloween and the substance of the movie had already been used with much more entertaining gusto in the Clint Howard-starring vehicle, Ice Cream Man, way back in 1995.
Ben Spurling, MOVIES and MANIA
“We really can’t help but watch in fascination as the layers of repressed brutality hiding underneath the supposed safety of a suburban bubble, something that’s supposed to shield one from the brutality of the outside world, are peeled away and revealed to be a place of dangerous animalistic violence. Ultimately, The Ice Cream Truck is a hell of an exploration of unconscious fear, and it’s very much worth checking out.” Cultured Vultures
“Russo’s performance alone makes it worthwhile, and even though he doesn’t get as much to do as I would have liked, Johnsen’s performance as the ice cream truck driver is convincing and not without a hint of menace. The movie paints an uneasy portrait of suburbia that freely lives in a world of parody, but fortunately never falls into camp.” Critical Outcast
“It may be a little too slow for your typical fan but I do believe there’s an audience for it if they find it. It felt like one of the more off beat horror movies off the 80’s & 90’s that were just a little too slow for mainstream but are remembered fondly by all […] The offbeat, scary but friendly portrayal of The Ice Cream Man by Emil Johnsen was perfectly fitting for the films pace.” Without Your Head
“Ultimately, The Ice Cream Truck makes up for most of its shortcomings with a charming protagonist and a witty script, even if some elements feel uneven. Johnston’s John Carpenter influence might not always mesh with the story at hand, but at the very least it makes things interesting.” Bloody Disgusting
“At no point in this film was I tense or frightened. I might have fallen asleep but couldn’t say because I didn’t miss anything. The acting is strong. The production is well done. The Ice Cream Truck is a nice looking movie, but like the ice cream being peddled onscreen, there’s no real substance to be found.” Nerdly
“While The Ice Cream Truck is, overall, a successful film, it may have benefited from more emphasis on the horror aspect of its plot. The pacing is a bit slow at times when the focus lingers too much on the more dramatic side of the film, while the horror side often feels too short in comparison.” Tn Horror News
The Ice Cream Truck was released by Uncork’d Entertainment in theaters and on VOD August 18, 2017.