Friday, October 7, 2011

31 Nights of Terror #6 - Eden Lake (2008)

Eden Lake (2008)
Director: James Watkins
Starring: Kelly Reilly, Michael Fassbender, Tara Ellis, Jack O'Connell
Format: DVD

- This one was a cheap blind buy. I know nothing about it.
- Okay, so it's British. And directed by James Watkins, who wrote a great little flick called My Little Eye.
- And stars Michael Fassbender, who since this has gone on to play parts in Inglourious Basterds and X-Men: First Class (as young Magneto).
- Hello Kelly Reilly. If there's one thing the Brits know how to produce it's sexy redheads (for more evidence see Karen Gillan from Dr Who).
- I guess I'm getting old and crotchety, because nothing makes my blood boil like disrespectful kids.
- Jesus Christ, there's some tough viewing in this. The one scene with the kids taking turns cutting the guy in particular.
- Movie is finished and I just realised I didn't write any notes for the second half of it, I was so engrossed in what was happening on screen.

Overall thoughts: Wow. It's been a long, long time since I've been as affected by a horror movie as I was by Eden Lake. This movie brought out more raw emotion (most of it anger) than I've felt in forever. At the core it's an isolation survival movie (like The Hills Have Eyes and so many others) mixed with a revenge flick (Last House on the Left, I Spit on Your Grave et al), and an effective one at that, full of suspense, jump scares and brutal violence.
But beyond that it is a commentary on the way our society is changing. From what I've seen and read, the increase in youth violence is a major problem in England (where Eden Lake is set), but disaffected and disrespectful youth are prevalent in any western society. This movie takes what we all know is going on in our society and puts it right in our face in a blunt and extreme manner. The idea of a monster chasing us through the woods is pretty scary. Switch the monster with a group of conscienceless youths and it becomes something that could actually happen, so all the more terrifying.
If you haven't seen Eden Lake, see it now.

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