The Oregonian Review

Standard

First the good, or at least the tolerable; I was expecting far more of an assault on the senses from the opening of this meandering 80minutes but only managed to have my ears scratched with pleasant (or very unpleasant depending on how much drone you can stand and personally I am fan) tinny Americana sounds disrupting drawn out silences. The other plus is more self-serving in that this film has no story, in the slightest, so I am saved from raking over the plot which I hate doing in reviews.

The audio is the strongest part of the piece but with no strong visual or narrative (or anything for that matter) to underpin what you hear ends up a lone element in persuading to keep watching. A girl, a car wreck, girl becomes bloody and traipses aimlessly occasionally remembering to yell for help, cue brief to the point of useless flash backs or forwards and happening upon the odd ineffectively sinister stranger. If this sounds in anyway intriguing it is unintentional on my part. The decidedly seventies chic hand held camera work lends an almost Evil Dead in the daylight air (when a part possessed Ash similarly stumbles about with a bashed in head) to the wandering through a rainy woodland but never really adds enough in the way of paranoid suspense. Sadly I can’t even sing the praises of any of the performances, coming across as semi improvised it’s not so much the lack of dialogue that castrates the actors but the complete lack of having anything to do. They either appear out of nowhere, stopping briefly to loiter ‘’eerily’’, or if you’re our lead, walk, have flash backs/hallucinations/whatever and not so much wield a shotgun as inexplicably stumble upon one and proceed to ferry it around. Once the ”trippy” jump cuts kicked in I gave up all together, only watching to see if this gun was ever going to get used.

This is a very numb film; the makers mistaking dragging out one long non-event for patient dread. A pretty pointless exercise in vying for grimy cult status but by no means as out-there as it thinks it is.

(April 2012)

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