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Wake Wood (2011)

  Tags: Aidan Gillen, Amelia Crowley, Brendan McCarthy, Briain Gleeson, Dan Gordon, David Keating, Ella Connolly, Eva Birthistle, evil kid, Hammer Films, killer kid, pegan ritual, Ruth McCabe, small town, Timothy Spall, Wake Wood

Your rating: None Average: 3.5 (4 votes)
Reviewer Rating: 
5

wakewooddvd.jpg
Rating #: 
5/10
Director: 
David Keating
Runtime: 
90 minutes
Cast: 
Timothy Spall, Aidan Gillen, Eva Birthistle, Ruth McCabe, Briain Gleeson, Amelia Crowley, Dan Gordon, Ella Connolly

Wake Wood is the start of a handful of flicks coming out of the return of Hammer Films. Much like the straight-to-DVD effort, The Resident, this flick takes a fairly standard and over-used story and adds little bits of creativity here and there, resulting in a decent, but still highly predictable horror pic.

The movie tells the story of a couple that relocates to a small quiet town called Wake Wood after their young daughter is savagely killed by a dog. While driving home late one night their car runs into a bit of trouble and they find themselves stranded at the side of the road. Spotting a nearby farmhouse, they make their way to it in hopes of getting a hand from the locals. Instead, they witness a strange ritual practice that seemingly involves the resurrection of a loved one. It's not long before the couple reaches out to the townspeople about possibly bringing back their daughter..

As you can tell from the premise, they're not treading new territory here, however there are some key moments in the pic that stand out in my mind. I thought the ritual involved to bring forth the deceased was pretty interesting and a little longer than expected. Unfortunately, we don't get to that point until a little over 30-minutes into the flick, so it's pretty slow-paced until then. Things pick up when the daughter returns and the parents become reluctant to return her back to wherever she came from after their limited 3 days is up.

Apparently that's one of the "rules" one has when they bring someone back -- they can't be dead for more than a year; they can only remain for 3 days and no more; and the deceased must never leave the town. Sadly, one of the many plot-holes the film possesses are the 'hows' and 'whys' of the ritual and mysterious town itself. The town's ancient ritual poses many questions that we just don't get answers to. The flick becomes more predictable as time goes on, and by the end turns into what you'd expect from this particular sub-genre. By the final moments of the movie we're thrown a strange ending that just leaves us scratching our heads as we realize it's just another one of the many questions asked, which again, won't be answered.

Done best with Pet Sematary, Wake Wood is a decent imitation at best, especially if you like these types of films. I'm personally fond of the killer-kid sub-genre, so I probably enjoyed the movie a little more than I should have. However, it still couldn't veer itself away from the dull and predictable as time went on, leaving me with mixed feelings about it.

Posted on April 27, 2011 - 3:24pm | FrighT MasteR

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