Here's a title that has sort of been lingering on Netflix as a suggestion for yours truly. I finally decided to check the trailer out after realizing that it featured Rafe Spall, who I recognize most from his role in 'Hot Fuzz' as Andy Cartwright, but most would probably sooner recognize as the writer in 'Life of Pi'. Sure enough it ends up being a British horror movie, and I tend to be a sucker for those if I can manage to find them. So I dove right in.
The movie kicks off with the sudden death of a young man named Robert (Paul Reid). In his memory, a group of his friends, Hutch (Robert James Collier), Dom (Sam Troughton), Phil (Arsher Ali) and Luke (Spall) decide to take a hiking trip on Kungsleden (King's Trail) in Sarek National Park, in northern Sweden. When Dom slips and twists his ankle, they end up taking a shortcut through the woods where they are stalked by a strange creature who seems to feed on their fears, and give them horrific nightmares.
For the most part, I enjoyed this. But I have to admit there were moments of confusion from time to time. I'd have to say there's more going for this movie though, than against it, especially as a horror movie. Whatever's stalking them is a mystery up until the end, but we can't really tell if it's a creature, fear itself, or some crazy twist. The characters all play off each other pretty well, and I have to admit that it did a good job at making me uneasy. There's definitely something unsettling about a dark forest at night, and this movie utilizes that eeriness quite well.
Perhaps the most interesting takeaway from this, however, was that through most of it I kept wondering to myself if maybe this was what 'Slender Man' should have looked like instead. Or at least something very similar. I mean, that movie isn't even out yet, but I've seen the trailer, and I don't get much of a 'Slender Man' vibe from it as opposed to what this movie pulled off.
For as much praise as I give it, however, the very end of it is actually unfortunately kinda lame. It's one of those instances where the movie feels like it just stops. And yet, you sit there trying to figure out how you would have ended it any better. It's an odd one. I would equate it to something like the ending of 'The Amityville Horror'. But the rest of the movie is actually not bad at all as far as the horror aspect of things go. It was very unsettling at times, especially with the perpetual use of tortured screaming off screen. I always say the imagination is more powerful than anything physical, and what we picture in our heads is far worse than whatever makeup effects they can splash about.
I'd recommend this one to people like myself who are, in fact, fans of British horror specifically. But I wouldn't get your hopes up too high either. This is something to throw on if you're in the mood to be creeped out by the strange and unusual some stormy afternoon. Ending aside, I quite enjoyed it