Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Black Forest

Director - David Biggs (Blood Night, Sleepwalking)
Starring - Marie-Josee Dionne (Antibirth, Slasher), France Huot, and Jayson Stewart (The Pasta Killer!, A Dark Truth)
Release Date - 2015
Genre - Horror
Tagline - "In the heart of the wild no humanity remains"
Format - DVD (Personal Collection) (Screener)

Rating (out of 5):
     Instagram has turned into a valuable resource for me.  I love reviewing indie films.  That's one of the reasons I started writing reviews.  I created an IG account almost two years ago and it was only recently that I started browsing hashtags.  For the most part I spend most of my time under #horror but now I spend all my time under #indiehorror where I come across some pretty fantastic stuff.  Not long ago I found posts on the Distant Fields' film Black Forest.  It looked like my type of film so I found them out on Facebook and reached out to them.  We did some talking and they were kind enough to send me a review copy along with some promo material.  Thank you for allowing Horror Society and myself to check out all your hard work!
     The film follows friends Bree (Dionne) and Jess (Huot) who plan a weekend camping trip in the wilderness of Canada.  They rent a canoe and head out but not before meeting an overly nice man who is heading to the same area as them.  They blow him off and do their own thing when they run into him again.  This time he turns hostile and leaves them for the night.  They plan to leave their site the following morning but he shows up and forces them to flee their campsite when he starts shooting arrows at them.  They flee through the woods trying to find a forest ranger and accidently stumble upon the killer's house where he is working with another guy to prepare for the end of civilization.  The two girls must first for survival or become their playthings.

     I was under the impression that this one was going to be a slasher but the film did not play out like that at all.  Doesn't make it a bad film because it was not a slasher.  In fact, it wasn't a bad movie just had a lot going against it making it not as entertaining as it should have been.  The acting in this one is pretty rough.  The leading ladies are absolutely gorgeous but the struggle to find their footing.  They come off as a little forced and the chemistry between doesn't feel natural.  They needed to rehearse before each scene with some direction from the director.  The remainder of the cast shows a lot of heart and dedication as well but they clearly did not show that much experience in front of the camera.  The story for this one tricked me.  I thought I was going to be watching a slasher in the woods, one of my favorite styles of slasher, but it flipped the switch on me.  Instead, we get a game of cat and mouse with a little inspiration from the Leonard Lake and Charles Ng murders.  This was fun and very similar to Amerikan Holokaust without the extremities but the film had horrible pacing issues.  Some of the scenes were painfully slow.  I'm talking so slow and boring that I almost turned the film off several times.  The overall film was entertaining but it was a trial by fire type of experience.  Finally, the film does have some blood and solid no budget effects.  I was a little impressed by how they used classic camera tricks to pull the kills off.  The deaths themselves were not that original but they still fit the film.  Overall, Black Forest is far from perfect.  The acting is off and the story has issues but the overall presentation was worth the watch.  Check it out. 

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