|Index||4 reviews in total|
Six cadets perform a night-time training exercise in their out-of-term
school, only to find the place infested with burglars and ghouls.
Ah - Brit horror, why do you torment me so? This one is not the worst, and it does have some bounce to it, with a steady build to the climax. The actors do well, and some of the dialogue is good, although the usual problem of unnecessary or underdeveloped characters runs all the way through. There is some decent humour, but the story is completely contrived in a mish-mash of genre, and in the end the elements are forced together like repulsing magnets.
All the clichés of horror are poorly done - jump scares, figures in the background, sudden noises. Some comical moments - two characters run like hell from ... what? + characters come clattering down a stairs an unfeasibly long time after the sound that attracted them and ask breathless questions. And surely the prologue could have been done with less staginess and better attention to detail - the quill writing was total cheese. And it suffers the usual British coyness about sex and gore.
The music was varied, sometimes impressive, sometimes ho-hum or inappropriate.
This is low budget, so it deserves some forbearance, but you can't get around the basic problem with the story: it's about as plausible and menacing as an episode of Scooby Doo.
Why can't the Brits do horror like indie American, or the French or Spanish?
I think that to be fair to a film and those that made it, you have to consider what they set out to achieve. Obviously low budget with unknown actors and direction you would expect something fairly low-rent but maybe watchable and that is exactly what you get. Interesting but implausible storyline, enthusiastic but sometimes almost hysterical acting, bargain basement special effects and repetitive backgrounds and scenery but all done with a degree of gusto and good humour.Lads (or new boyfriend and girlfriend) night in after the pub sort of thing.I expect that those who took part will move on to bigger and better things in particular the young cast some of whom showed promise and I would look forward to seeing the gorgeous Rachel Petladwala in something more challenging.Or anything really.I agree with the other reviewer that the film to some extent lacked the courage of its convictions but I suspect that they couldn't afford a really good "gore" make up artist and the cast were nervous about being typecast as sex sirens or whatever the male equivalent may be. All in all, it does what it says on the tin and is not in any way pretentious.It couldn't afford to be. As my old Latin teacher used to say "6 out of 10 for effort"
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
About three and a half centuries before the present time; an arc lord
of sorts haunts a school campus and murders the four best students.
They are murdered in the fashion of the time by the elements of fire
(burned alive), air (hanging), earth (buried alive), and water
(drowned). Fast forward and a bunch of military cadets are expected to
patrol the campus on the nearly three and a half century anniversary of
the incident. A few of them are on edge, the rest just don't know why
they have to be patrolling the grounds. According to their commanding
officer it is quite simple really - either patrol the grounds or they
don't get into the college of their choice. The patrol has a few of the
cadets that take it seriously, to the rest it is sort of a joke where
they kill time. The patrol starts out with them as expected. There are
a number of fake scares along the way, before those fake scares start
to turn into the main 'ghosts' of the movie. To mix things up, the
movie includes two burglars that want to get to the school's archive.
I want to say more about the movie, but I ended up falling asleep during the middle segments - so I assume it wasn't that interesting. All I remember is people walking around with more jump scares and close calls that turn out to be false alarms.
When I finally did wake up the movie was starting to get interesting again. I won't spoil it; but the four spirits are merely a sideplot compared to the betrayal that occurs. The cadets ended up in for a bit more than they bargained for, but what horror movie doesn't follow this trope?
I found the character interaction to be a good thing; but the characterization implied the characters had a bit of an inner circle going on - something that isn't known to the audience. Otherwise the character interactions felt spot on as far as a movie is concerned. I didn't mind the jump scares and I found they built up a little bit of suspense and gave a false sense of security build up for when the real horror finally began. Do I recommend the movie? Yes - but be warned, the movie starts out good, and slowly starts to wind down as it progresses.
Originally posted to Orion Age (http://www.orionphysics.com/? p=11516).
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
You might think it's a good thing that they avoided certain horror stereotypes, but in this film they really needed those stereotypes. For example, it was 6 teens in a haunted house, but no one snuck in drugs. No one got naked (on camera anyway). None of the killings was gory, and the main bad guy was shot and killed by another bad guy (meaning that our heroes really didn't do anything themselves). A teen horror movie with no blood, no nudity, and no excitement? Coulda been a lot better. There were also unoriginal things that didn't work well, such as the power being cut, creatures lurking in the background who are never explained, etc.
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