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Wake Wood, FTW!

Updated on February 13, 2012
Wake Wood (2011)
Wake Wood (2011)

During my recent horror binge I happened to watch the UK and Irish horror feature, The Wake Wood (2011). After the death of their only nine-year-old daughter, Alice (Ella Connolly), Patrick (Aidan Gillen) and Louise (Eva Birthistle) move out to a remote town of Wake Wood. Accidentally catching their neighbors resurrecting the dead, the couple decides to risk it all to see their daughter once again. The film was successfully eerie and had some originality in its story and execution.

1. Man versus Beast. At first, when I saw a dog mauling little (definitely foolish) Alice I thought that’d be the end of the animal trauma, but nope. Humans and animals alike face some abuse and what an interesting interaction. It makes for an intriguing element for this horror film; as destructive as humans and animals are, there’s some fragility to both their lives. It really works as a scary element.

2. Pagan Rituals? Louise accidentally stumbles onto the resurrection ritual, which looks pretty well thought out. Every step of the ritual, which the film goes over in detail as the plot progresses, feels like it serves a purpose and connects with life / death. It’s well executed, and it looks realistic – well as far as pagan rituals go, I guess. The ritual introduces a set of rules that are consistent and if broken have serious consequences.

3. Children in horror movies are creepy. Enough said. I don’t know what it is about horror-children, but they’re so damn eerie. Even though Alice is so small, cute and sporting a little yellow rain coat, there is something about her that just freaks me out. There is nothing outright scary about children it’s simply that potential underneath the adorable exterior.

You don’t see the horror coming, but when it does come it is strange and interesting in all the right ways. The story has originality and intrigue, and fortunately plenty of blood to satisfy gore fans. You will be satisfied, and it’s always great seeing Timothy Spall (Harry Potter) raise a twisted eyebrow when sh*t goes down.


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