There's a certain snarky charm to this nicely constructed low-budget horror thriller. It's a teen slasher flick -- there's as much blatant gore as in the original Halloween -- gussied up with a larger plot that sends the story back and forward in time. Somehow, for some reason, it never becomes confusing. There is a particularly nifty knot to tie up the loose ends in the last two minutes that Sherlock Holmes might see coming, or even Dr. Watson. Those of us who enjoy suspending our disbelief -- that is, overlooking the obvious plot problems -- for a thriller as carefully crafted, if overtly derivative, as Killer Instinct, will be happy to let it slide, at least this once. Paige Moss' performance as the fearfully brave heroine never dips into "scream queen" territory -- her looks may even lead one to mentally cast her in the role of Chelsea Clinton (should the former First Daughter ever get her own biopic). When Killer Instinct is over, you may find yourself wondering if you had the identity of the killer right, but in this film, that's not such a big deal -- really.