There has been so much hype leading up to the release of this movie and I have heard stories of people hurling chunks of their popcorn in the cinemas or simply walking out.
It’s been classed as ‘The Scariest movie you’ll ever see’.
So of course, I was sucked in by the hype and went and saw it last night at Hoyts Woden.
I was there about 15 minutes before the scheduled start time and there were only 4 other people in the cinema. I thought that it was going to be a poor showing.
Boy was I wrong. Over the next 30 minutes (which is how long it took for the movie to start including the previews), the cinema filled right up to about 75% full.
Now, I’m patriotic and I love my Australian music/TV/Movies and it was heart-warming to see that many people in a cinema for an Aussie movie.
Mind you, there was stuff-all else on, (I wanted to see Nick Caves’ The Proposition, but that had crap times), unless you were into a Chick Flick (see: Pride and Prejudice, In Her Shoes, Elizabethtown, Must Love Dogs and some thing about Ballroom Dancing and Charm School…), or some ordinary action movie(Doom (I like The Rock, but come on), Into the Blue).
The first third of the movie sets up the characters and scene excellently. There is some solid casting here and the characters were likeable and the storyline, solid. It was refreshing to see some Australian landscape that didn’t make you feel like you were watching a tourist commercial. (although, spot the error when the sun rises over the sea on the west coast!)
The travellers (2 English Backpackers, and an Aussie guy), who are heading from Broome to Cairns (now that’s a killer drive!) stop at the Wolf Creek Crater, (actually called Wolfe Creek Crater in WA) and it’s here that things start to go wrong.
Sure the crater is pretty and the company was nice, but when your car won’t start and you are 100’s of kilometres from nowhere you start to shit your pants.
Which is exactly what the crowd started to do as we watch the 3 travellers meeting Mick Taylor(John Jarrett, who Quentin Tarantino hails as Australia’s best actor and is casting in a future movie called Grind House.) and accepting a lift back to his camp so he can fix their car.
So, this is where it all goes pear-shaped for our trio of young folk.
I won’t go into detail. But from here on in it’s some top notch horror/thriller action. Most people don’t come to expect top class horror from an Australian movie, but this movie goes to show what we can produce, something decent as opposed to Razorback. (Classic!)
And it isn’t that gruesome.
Sure, there’s some bloody scenes, and you are squirming in your seat a little, but most of it is left up to the imagination. It’s your head that is thinking the worst stuff. What you see on the screen is not actually that gory. But the suspense, and the tone of the movie are excellent. They suck you in, and you are in for a top ride.
My first impression when it was over was, “Is that it?”. I was a little disappointed because of all the hype leading up to it and the professed ‘extreme’-ness of the movie. But once I got past the fact that I was actually a blood thirsty maniac looking to live my psycho-killer side through characters on a screen, I realised the quality of this movie.
The casting, the script, the cinematography, the soundtrack, the lighting. All quality.
I truly hope this movie gets the accolades and the attention it deserves. Australia can, and does produce quality movies, but too often they have little universal appeal and are not widely publicised. I hear that Wolf Creek will be released in the US on Christmas Day, so I will be interested to see what sort of reaction it gets there. (note that Saw II debuted at No. 1 in the US Box Office this week.)