I put off watching Wolf Creek for quite some time, as it just really didn't sound like a movie that I would enjoy. But boy was I wrong! Going in to this one, I was expecting it to be all out torture porn - which is what I had heard in other reviews. Not being a fan of hard out gory movies, or movies including torture, I just thought "stuff it, it won't be as bad as The Human Centipede" (which I actually managed to watch from start to end). To be fair there is some torture, but most of the scenes are fairly brief, and a lot of it is done off screen. Anyway, here is my review!
I would give the acting 8/10 stars. Well, to be fair - Ben Mitchell (Nathan Phillips) and Mick Taylor (John Jarratt) both get 10/10 stars, because they were both brilliant actors. The two girls Liz Hunter (Cassandra Magrath) and Kristy Earl (Kestie Morassi) on the other hand, were pretty decent actresses, but not quite as talented as the other two, so they can get 8/10 stars.
This movie had great characters, as it had one of the best horror villains of the 21st century as far as I'm concerned, because John Jarratt is a bloody brilliant actor. The three main characters consist of Ben, Liz and Kristy, who we get to know very well in the first hour or so of the film, so it is pretty heart wrenching to see what they have to go through.
Story Line (Mild Spoilers)
Okay so here's the basic summary of the movie:
Three friends (Ben, Liz and Kristy) decide to go on a road trip through Australia, and plan to eventually travel up to Sydney. Liz and Kristy are both English, and Ben was born and raised in Aussie. They buy themselves a cheap car and head to a place called 'Wolf Creek' to go for a three hour hike. When they arrive back, they discover that their car mysteriously won't start - and they are stuck in the middle of the Australian outback.
Some hours later, in the pitch black, a guy named Mick Taylor (John Jarratt) turns up, and offers them a tow back to his campsite, where he then offers to fix their car and get them all something to drink. The next morning we see all three characters wake up, tied up in different places around the camp, struggling to get free. Mick is having a go at one of the girls and torturing her, so her friends have to try and figure out how to escape and save her. The rest of the movie follows the three friends (the two girls especially) and their desperate attempt to escape and kill the mad man.
No cliches, nothing that you'd expect. Absolutely original and great, not like anything I'd ever seen before. Sure, having someone that obviously has pretty serious mental problems as the villain isn't anything new, but they did it well. You couldn't tell when we first met Mick that he was a sadistic monster, which is what was so great about this - what he did to the three main characters was totally out of the blue.
Mick came across as a really nice guy, just doing the three friends a favor - until they fell asleep. He's a bad guy that hunts tourists, and anyone that tries to stop him from doing so. Which is unusual, because usually the bad guy is hunting campers, or teens, or.... or actually, it's always just teens. Wolf Creek had twists and plots that you never would have seen coming, and the things that happened to the characters were totally unexpected, and a little upsetting at times. This one gets a 10/10 for originality - which isn't something you see often in horror flicks.
Special Effects / Costumes
All the characters looked great, and Mick was a truly convincing Aussie bloke. What I did like about this film is that all four of the main characters are perfectly normal human beings, without invincibility or super strength (I'm looking at you, Michael Myers) which made the set up fair game.
As far as the effects go, they were perfect and incredibly realistic - there was actually one incredibly cringe worthy scene where I had to look away for a few seconds, because the blood and gore did look so real. As far as I can remember, there were no stand out special effects, as they had used mainly (what looked to be) practical effects, so smiles all around.
Ending (Major Spoilers)
Now, this is probably the only part of the film that actually disappointed me a bit. The ending was quite weak, and sudden - it was almost as if the film had suddenly just, well, ended. We are told that Liz and Kristy were never heard from or seen again, which in itself sucks because the last time we saw Liz, her spine had been severed and she was "a head on a stick" in Mick's garage.
We do, however, get to see Ben escape and go in to hospital to make a full recovery, but some how this wasn't quite satisfying. Without giving absolutely everything away, I figure that the film probably ended the way it did because they hadn't decided if they wanted to do a sequel at that stage.
So all in all, I'd probably give this film a rating of 7.2/10 - just because the ending was a bit of a disappointment. Don't get me wrong, I have DEFINITELY seen worse movie endings, but I think they could have ended this film in a better way, because it seemed like they had kind of ran out of ideas.
Awesome villain, as I said earlier, definitely one of the best 21st Century horror villains, and he really made the story perfect - it would be hard to imagine having a different actor play the role.
So would I advise it? For horror fans - hell yeah! This film isn't too hard core, but I still wouldn't advise it for anyone with a weak stomach. Definitely worth the watch if you're in to that kind of thing, as it is very original - you won't find yourself sighing and yelling at teenagers who have just tripped over their own feet.
Thanks for reading! What film would you like to see reviewed next?