Wake Wood (2010) Review

The parents of a girl who was killed by a savage dog are granted the opportunity to spend three days with their deceased daughter -imdb.com

Sometimes the biggest detractor from a movie is not its flaws, but its lack of strengths. Wake Wood falls victim to this in the biggest of ways. This is a clearly low-budget production and it’s well made considering that, however the lackluster nature of pretty much everything in this movie prevents it from rising above what people would normally expect from a low budget horror movie.

The acting is fair, even if we don’t care much for the characters. A stand out performance is Wormtail as the leader of the Wakewood cult as well as the little girl, who while stoic, is a good child actor. The movie manages to create enough atmosphere and use odd sets and angles to occasionally get you to feel a touch uncomfortable. The effects are okay, even if there’s not much there. Again, everything technical in this movie is, to an extent, fair.

Where this movie fails is its complete failure to do… anything… to make you interested or scared. The film’s borrowed plot from Pet Semetary is barely accentuated, just replacing an unexplained force with a cult using an unexplained force. The girl has a ticking clock to evil from the beginning, so when the movie’s transition into such isn’t subtle we know exactly what’s going on. There are so many caveats to the rules that defeating this zombie should be easy, so when it comes time to climax we’re faced with a solution we say from a mile away. There are lots of little inconsistencies that perforate this movie, leading me to give even less of a shit about what’s going on. The film does have, to its credit, a lot of strangeness. Little details and twists throughout this movie that do make it unique, but not enough to be special (if that makes any sense). The strange-ass ending should be noted as it’s a wonderful homage to the 70s british horror movies this film is trying to emulate.

Overall Wake Wood is worth your time if a) You’re a fan of 70s british horror b) You’re okay with low budget movies and c) You’ve never seen Pet Semetary. Other then that I’m afraid that this movie just doesn’t due enough to justify the time, even if it’s not an all out bad movie.