You know when a group of friends go to a secluded house for a relaxing weekend and the title of the film is called Beyond the Woods things are most probably going to get nasty for them in this independently shot Irish horror.
Seven lifelong pals have all met up for the first time in ages and intend to spend the weekend catching up at one of the group’s family holiday home. One of them Ger, bless him is nursing a broken heart as his partner has dumped him. They are a likeable bunch except for Ray, a workaholic asshole who is constantly glued to his mobile and isn’t a happy man when he finds out there is no internet.
When they all arrive at the house, they are greeted with a vile smelling whiff which is coming from a ‘sinkhole’ which has appeared a couple of miles away. The stench is most unpleasant and they only leave the house to smoke a bit of weed. As the weekend progresses something is lurking in the undergrowth outside and when one of the party goes AWOL, things certainly go pear shaped.
With it’s cover art, you’d think Beyond the Woods is a slasher film which is entirely inaccurate. It’s a nicely plotted slow burning chiller with some half decent characterisation which is helped by the natural performances from it’s cast. Of course being a low budget film, it hasn’t got the gloss of a Hollywood product but that doesn’t matter as it has a pretty decent story and some really atmospheric sound work complemented by some sparse effects which work well.
Although there’s a fair amount of death, it’s not gory and relies on clever editing which makes the film seem more violent than it is. I thought it was a lot of fun and although it took a while to get to the action, that didn’t matter as you were getting to know the characters which makes a nice change.
- Starring Irene Kelleher Sean McGillicuddy Claire Loy John Ryan Howard
- Director Sean Breathnach
- Distributor Left Films