Southbound (2015)


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6/10
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Some of the team behind the first V/H/S anthology are back with Southbound, which is yet another compilation of Twlight Zone-esque tales, this time centered around a mysterious strip of road and all those who travel on it. Luckily the segments are blended together quite well and we don't have to sit through some silly host or makeshift reason for everything to be connected. Instead, the filmmakers went a more seamless approach and had events and/or characters trickle into other stories, showing the viewer how they're all connected in some way thanks to their hellish (literally) location.

The first tale is from YouTube personalities "Radio Silence" and somewhat serves as a wraparound that also sets the mood for the rest of the segments. Titled "The Way Out" we focus on a couple bloodied dudes who have clearly seen some shit. They're on their way back home, but hot on their trail are some dark floating creatures that will seemingly stop at nothing to collect these men. But why? And WTF are they anyway? We don't find the answers to these questions until the final story.

The second, titled "Siren," focuses on a few rocker chicks stranded on the side of the road after their van breaks down. They hitch a ride with a nice family that seem stuck in the 50's, from how they present themselves to the look of their home. Something is definitely off about them, but it doesn't become more apparent than the end when one of the girls stumbles on some sort of evil ritual that's headed by none other than the family (*cue dramatic music*).

The third segment is called "The Accident" and is essentially just that--a man hits a girl (from the previous story) with his car and is the phone with 911, while he attempts to drive the severely injured female to the nearest town. Once there he realizes there's no help to be seen, so the voices over the phone guide him into trying to save the girl's life. This is definitely the most tense of the tales, but unfortunately didn't really amount to much by the end.

"Jailbreak" is the title for the next installment, which follows a shotgun-toting man looking for the whereabouts of his missing sister. He finds some answers in a seedy local bar, but he may not like where the answers lead him. Lastly, we have the conclusion of the first story, or more accurately the prologue that explains why the men are on the run and what from. Sadly this turned out to be a boring home invasion thriller, but at least we get some answers.

By the end of the film we've come full circle, with each story detailing a diabolical outcome for our characters (with the exception of one which didn't really result to anything, but I digress). While I did find each one interesting, a couple were a little TOO simplistic and none were exactly original or even scary at all. In fact, I found them more reminiscent of something that could've easily been seen on television by a teen audience. Regardless, it's entertaining and still one of the better recent horror anthologies. 

Southbound is a decent anthology that came real close to being good, but not quite hitting the mark thanks to not offering anything new, keeping things a little too simplistic, and seemingly playing it more safe than necessary. Still, it's an interesting and entertaining watch, especially for anthology fans.
OVERALL: 
Southbound is a decent anthology that came real close to being good, but not quite hitting the mark thanks to not offering anything new, keeping things a little too simplistic, and seemingly playing it more safe than necessary. Still, it's an interesting and entertaining watch, especially for anthology fans.