Cast - 20%
Story - 70%
Music Score - 40%
Effects/Quality - 30%
Originality - 30%
The Monster is literally in your face, as is prominently shown on the cover of the DVD. This horror movie does not hold back in showing you the actual Monster so there’s nothing left to the imagination or a longing to see the actual creature. This movie is from acclaimed horror filmmaker and the director of The Strangers, Bryan Bertino who allows this movie to follow the same themes of fleshing out the characters while alluding to an impending tragedy.
A divorced mother and her headstrong daughter must make an emergency late-night road trip to see the girl’s father. As they drive through deserted country roads on a stormy night, they suddenly have a startling collision that leaves them shaken but not seriously hurt. Their car, however, is dead, and as they try in vain to get help, they come to realize they are not alone — a terrifying evil is lurking in the woods, intent on never letting them leave.
Even though it is a literal creature or monster that is stalking the pair in the film, it does feel like the monster is also a representation of the mother’s alcoholism, at first she does not recognize it only the daughter experiences it, she is forced to confront it and must choose which is more important to her either overcome her crippling fear or remain trapped. That’s a deep perspective but the story is layered and mixes in elements of scenes from the characters past, stark contrasts with drama within the car and terror happening outside the car, all of which are separate elements but gel well together to give the movie a deeper plot.
Creature design seems familiar and offers up nothing fresh in creature design, the story revolves around the mother and daughter relationship with the creature playing a background presence as their struggles are explored. The monster is a mere catalyst for the drama to unfold even though it it’s a creature horror movie the interactions of the characters is what holds it together, similarly to the director’s movie The Strangers in which two characters are put into an awkward and tense situation the lurking troubles only exaggerates the emotional struggles of an already fading relationship. Interesting movie with average jump scares and gore.
Reviewed on: DVD
Available on: DVD, Blu-Ray, Digital
Age Rating: Mature+
Estimated RRP: R100+
Release Date: 24 January 2017