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Kevin J. O'Connor
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A British Squad is sent on a training mission in the Highlands of Scotland against Special Operations squad. Ignoring the childish "campfire" stories heard about the area, they continue with their mission and come across the bloody remains of the Special Ops Squad, and a fierce howling is pitching the night sky... With two mortally wounded men, they make an escape, running into a zoologist by the name of Megan - who knows exactly what hunts them. What began as what they thought was a training mission turns into a battle for their lives against the most unlikely enemies they would have expected - werewolves. Written by
The piece that Megan plays on the piano halfway through the film is Debussy's "Clair de Lune", roughly translatable as "moonbeam". The link is obvious, but is possibly also a nod to An American Werewolf in London (1981), the soundtrack of which consisted purely of songs with "moon" in the title. See more »
After Spoon has reported the status on their ammunition, Cooper places his gun on the table. In the next shot, two bandages suddenly appear beside its hammer. This is true in wide screen tv as in full screen, the hammer is cut off before it cuts to the shot with bandages. See more »
Basic, flawed but fun and does much better than the budget would have suggested was possible
A group of squaddies are sent out into woods in the Scottish highlands to take part in a small practice operation against a group of special force soldiers. However when Sgt Wells' men locate the other unit they find that Captain Ryan is the only survivor and, appears to be mad, gibbering about "things". When the group are attacked by something else, they take Ryan and his array of weapons and flee. They find local girl Megan in a landrover and she takes them to the nearest shelter to attend to the wounded an empty farmhouse. As Megan tells them of werewolves in the woods, and Ryan sits silent as to what his team were actually up to, the "things" start to gather and strike the house.
With comparatively no budget to speak of, it is no surprise that among the references, this film pays homage to the Evil Dead by calling one of its characters Corporal Bruce Campbell. Certainly with a group of people in farmhouse (cabin) in the woods fighting off an unstoppable supernatural evil is almost homage enough in itself although, for me, this didn't get anywhere near to the horror of that film. However it does still manage to produce quite an enjoyable film even if it isn't really scary in a true sense. The plot is simple and it is a good thing because the action bits are best, while the dialogue bits are less so. The film does pretty well to keep the tension up but I did think it could have been tighter and more suspenseful than it was at times. That said, the attacks are good and, as long as you aren't too demanding, it will do enough to keep you entertained. I must admit that the "Britishness" of it and the fact that it was such a low-budget affair may me more willing to forgive it such things although some of the dialogue was so clunky and unconvincing that it was occasionally hard to get past although I did get a big laugh out of the Matrix reference "there is no spoon".
The cast do pretty well, shouting and running around convincingly enough. I would have liked a bit liked a bit more humanity but in fairness the characters were pretty accurate for many squaddy types I know. Pertwee is fun and for probably the first and last time is the big name of the film. McKidd is OK but he has to carry a lot of the talking and it means his limits show up more than the others. Cleasby is pretty poor and she is lumbered with a poor character to boot. Cunningham was fairly obvious but I was constantly distracted by just how much he came across like George Galloway (minus the moustache of course). Lockyer, Robson, Simpson and others are pretty one dimensional but Morfitt had energy and manage to stand out with a bit of character. The direction is good and wisely keeps the camera fluid and the monsters hidden although I personally though the costumes were good for the money they cost.
Overall this is an enjoyable film. It appears to homage other films as much as it borrows from them, but it does it well enough. It could have been tenser, more exciting and it certainly could have been scarier but it still works as an action/horror of sorts. Apparently a sequel is planned and I hope the bigger budget can improve it a bit but for now this is an enjoyable low-budget horror that is basic but fun and worth seeing.
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