Newest Reviews
Treasure City
Shiva Baby
Flowers of Shanghai
War and Peace
Merrily We Go to Hell
Ellie & Abbie (& Ellie's Dead Aunt)
Amusement Park, The
Hands of Orlac, The
Death has Blue Eyes
Kala Azar
After Love
Earwig and the Witch
Zebra Girl
Skull: The Mask
Bank Job
Drunk Bus
State Funeral
Army of the Dead
Dinner in America
Death Will Come and Shall Have Your Eyes
PG: Psycho Goreman
Sound of Metal
Things of Life, The
Newest Articles
She's Evil! She's Brilliant! Basic Instinct on Blu-ray
Hong Kong Dreamin': World of Wong Kar Wai on Blu-ray
Buckle Your Swash: The Devil-Ship Pirates on Blu-ray
Way of the Exploding Fist: One Armed Boxer on Blu-ray
A Lot of Growing Up to Do: Fast Times at Ridgemont High on Blu-ray
Oh My Godard: Masculin Feminin on Blu-ray
Let Us Play: Play for Today Volume 2 on Blu-ray
Before The Matrix, There was Johnny Mnemonic: on Digital
More Than Mad Science: Karloff at Columbia on Blu-ray
Indian Summer: The Darjeeling Limited on Blu-ray
3 from 1950s Hollyweird: Dr. T, Mankind and Plan 9
Meiko Kaji's Girl Gangs: Stray Cat Rock on Arrow
Having a Wild Weekend: Catch Us If You Can on Blu-ray
The Drifters: Star Lucie Bourdeu Interview
Meiko Kaji Behind Bars: Female Prisoner Scorpion on Arrow
The Horror of the Soviets: Viy on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Tarka the Otter and The Belstone Fox
Network Double Bills: All Night Long and Ballad in Blue
Chew Him Up and Spit Him Out: Romeo is Bleeding on Blu-ray
British Body Snatchers: They Came from Beyond Space on Blu-ray
Bzzzt: Pulse on Blu-ray
The Tombs Will Be Their Cities: Demons and Demons 2 on Arrow
Somebody Killed Her Husband: Charade on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Maroc 7 and Invasion
Network Double Bills: The Best of Benny Hill and The Likely Lads
  Wilderness Downward Bound
Year: 2006
Director: Michael J. Bassett
Stars: Sean Pertwee, Alex Reid, Toby Kebbell, Stephen Wight, Luke Neal, Ben McKay, Lenora Crichlow, Karly Greene, Adam Deacon, Richie Campbell, Stephen Don, John Travers, George Shane, Gordon Fulton, John Rea
Genre: HorrorBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: At a young offenders institute there is a new arrival, Callum (Toby Kebbell), who the inmates in his dorm size up as potential victimisation material. But the ringleader of the tormentors, Steve (Stephen Wight), is more concerned with making the lives of Davie (John Travers) and Lindsay (Ben McKay) a misery, something he does with daily relish. However, this kind of behaviour has consequences, as the dorm discovers when they wake one morning to find Davie has killed himself by slashing his wrists. The governor is not pleased, so as punishment the boys are sent to the island...

Bullying became bigger news than ever before in the first decade of the twenty-first century, in Britain at any rate, and this was reflected in Wilderness, a horror that set out to show the impressionable viewer that it was no way to behave because you never know who you might be pissing off. You might have thought that highlighting the victims' feelings could have been a better way to achieving some kind of compassion and prevent these sorry situations arising, but that's not the way Dario Poloni's script approached the subject.

Well, it was a horror movie after all, and there's a scene with a counsellor trying to get the young thugs in touch with their sensitive sides that shows there are those who simply would not respond to this kind of treatment, according to this film anyway. So off they go to the island, which island precisely is never made clear, for an outward bound course in the middle of nowhere, and it seems to go much as you would expect with the hardship of the harsh conditions leavened by the fact that it resembles a holiday for them. Their leader is played by Sean Pertwee, and if you've ever seen him in a horror film it's almost inevitable how his character will end up.

But before that inevitable happens, the plot sows the seeds of unease with Steve and his righthand man Lewis (Luke Neal) encountering a poacher in the ruins of a castle, but director Michael J. Bassett cuts away before we see what they do to him. This is to make us wonder if they have killed him, for the poacher's mutilated body shows up soon after, but such an obvious misdirection that the film cannot wait to introduce its main antagonist. At first we're not sure who he is, but he does have a motive for picking off the party, and he uses an unusual weapon for a slasher movie: four well trained dogs who are ravenous for human flesh.

He also uses a crossbow, but you can't chase your prey through a forest with an arrow. Cleverly, the potential victims are not exactly sympathetic, yet we are put in the position of understanding that they may not be the most admirable of characters, but we don't necessarily want to see them die horribly. Of course, with the racist, homophobic, sexist, bullying Steve (hell of a collection of personality traits there) we do want to see him get his comeuppance, and the story keeps him around for as long as possible to give us a hate figure we can see, unlike the mysterious killer. Along the way the offenders meet a group of female counterparts, their leaders are disposed of, and there are some pretty fair action sequences to follow, with the low budget not hurting too much. Its lessons might be too out of the frying pan and into the fire for the real world, but in the context of a horror flick Wilderness does very well. Music by Mark Thomas.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark


This review has been viewed 2247 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

Review Comments (0)

Untitled 1

Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
  Desbris M
Andrew Pragasam
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf


Last Updated: