Monday, May 8, 2017

Day 189: The Woods

This movie will probably always be remembered as a footnote rather than on its own merits. This movie and M. Night Shyamalan's The Village were in production at the same time with the same name (The Woods). Shyamalan graciously changed his title rather than making Lucky McKee change his.

This movie follows a troubled teen girl played by Agnes Bruckner. Set in 1965, she is sent away to a private school after some minor arson. The school is plenty spooky and Heather (Bruckner) is haunted by dreams of a classmate covered in blood. She is also being tormented by another student and on top of all this, there are rumors that the academy was founded by witches. Heather's discovering of the secrets of the academy take up the better part of the movie but let's just say, bad things happen.

Bruckner and the mostly female cast do a fine job of acting, it is just that the story is a little rote. The school with a secret seems like an ancient horror trope well before McKee got to it. The one shining light is the involvement of Bruce Campbell in a role much larger than I thought he would have. I guess if part of your movie involves trees attacking someone, you need an expert on the evil dead.

In all, nothing about this is particularly original but it is well-executed. The drab color palette and school uniforms kind of make the whole exercise dreary. I would give this a solid C.

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