It’s amazing how locations for films have stood in for other places. Take Scotland, for example, with parts of it surprisingly doubling for war-torn London, Gotham City and Philadelphia during a zombie attack in the past.
It’s a more traditional side of the country that is on show here, with this film set in its beautiful rural countryside.
When her estranged father leaves her a remote cabin in the woods in his will, Rhona (Lauren Lyle) decides to make a trip of it for her with her friends, despite not knowing exactly where it is.
None of them really know what they’re doing, so it’s lucky that they meet Carla (Nicolette McKeown) before they set off, as she appears to know what she’s talking about. So much so that Rhona’s friend Heather (Layla Kirk) suggests that Carla tags along with them, as they’ll have a better chance of finding it with her help. Although Rhona isn’t keen on the idea, Carla agrees, and the group head off deep into the forest.
Rhona had a feeling about Carla from the off, and she was right to, as she’s hiding a secret past from the group, which consumes her to this day. And unfortunately for them, they’re about to discover it, one by one...
Groups of youngsters heading off into the woods to have a good time. When will they learn? No not the clueless youngsters, but the filmmakers who think it’s a good idea for a film. To say it’s a tired, overused plot then, is an understatement.
So if you’re dead set on using it, you better bring something new to the table. No doubt that’s exactly what Scottish director Ryan Hendrick was thinking, when he concocted this nonsense, with the ‘monster’ in the woods now being a female soldier struggling with a form of PTSD, which somehow manifests itself into - you guessed it - murdering young folk wandering around the woods.
But let’s make it clear, she isn’t a real monster, because she hangs out with them quite normally at first, and even indulges in a little sexy time. It’s soon clear however that using her military background as the crux for being an unhinged and deadly asset really doesn’t work.
It has its moments however, and if you’re looking for horror, you just might find it, of sorts, in some very scary dialogue, that will definitely make you cringe. And you just know things aren’t going well when a character decides they need to have a toilet break, which means them going off into the middle of the forest on their own. Is that nature calling? Nope, just another lazy trope of the genre.
Its one saving grace however is its peaceful locale, which may well have the Scottish Tourist Board out with their scissors, cutting out all the killing silliness, and re-editing it as a rather splendid advert for rural Scotland, which ultimately is all it’s good for.