When Patrick Wilson’s wife is abducted a clan of vicious cannibal seeking vengeance on, David Arquette, a murdering drifter, Kurt Russell, Matthew Fox and Richard Jenkins saddle up for a rescue mission. Little do they know the horror that awaits them…
What impressed me most about this movie is that the violence is truly the definition of savage. It’s quick, instinctual and enforced with jaw-dropping brutality. There’s also a primal, almost child-like simplicity to the way they slice, carve and chop. Like when a toddler pulls apart a butterfly by its wings.
And it didn’t follow what seems to be an unwritten cannibal movie checklist. You know… the sequence that happens in just about all of them. The wounded prey cowers by a tree as the man-eating hunters close in. The shirt is ripped off. The torso is cut open. The heart is ripped out. It is then held there in the hunter’s fingers as it bleeds down his arm for just a moment. And then chomp! chomp! chomp! Belch! Goodbye, heart! None of that same old same old going on here.
My second surprise is that Matthew Fox might actually be a bit of a decent actor. It’s amazing what you can learn about someone’s capabilities when they’re not running around some dumb fucking island, bitchin’ about hatches and smoke and polar bears, oh my!
The performances are great all round, Kurt Russell in particular. Most actors just seem to sleepwalk through the autumn to winter years of their career, but not this dude. A trooper till the end. Coming in at a close second, if not joint first, is Richard Jenkins, unrecognisable as the character, Chicory, whose overly curious demeanour and expert timing offers much of the comic relief.
Admittedly it does take quite a while to get going in terms of where the real horror is at. But the spaces between are filled with excellent dialogue and acting. And the action is well worth the wait. So be patient, this one just might make your jaw hit the floor, and keep it there.