As October marches on, so too must my cinema of the scary! For October second I chose the Beast of Xmoor! After yesterday’s wonderful horror movie, I was in the mood for some more monster movie action. After reading the synopsis on the Beast of Xmoor I thought that I might have found yet another hidden gem.
My god was I wrong.
The movie totes itself as a monster movie, claiming that a couple of monster hunters are looking for a cryptic and it will be hunting them back. Classic bait and switch, let me tell you. It takes just over half an hour for the movie to change focus to your typical Wrong Turn or Wolf Creek scenario, only with some notable differences.
First, the only believable character in the movie is the meth head girl they leave behind after finding a lead on where the cryptid is. The rest of the characters don’t exactly fit stereotypes, save the world renowned hunter. The mail protagonist is virtually useless, so far removed from machismo as to almost be asexual. The female lead is kind of typical, skirting the edges of cliché until she shows her just absolutely unrealistic level of prolonged hysteria.
Second, this entire movie is kind of built on bad decisions. I know, I know. Almost every horror movie has some pretty heavy elements of poor life choices in them, but very few of them feature characters that consistently make eye-rolling idiotic choices that these mockeries of sentience do. There is literally a point in the movie, where they give a man so concussed that he can barely stand or say a coherent word their only gun. In another scene, the killer (yep, killer. Not monster. The Bastards.) who now has said gun, is seen via a camera to be menacing the American camera man. The female protagonist’s genius idea is to run into the woods with a flare screaming “run to the light!” Did I mention he was unconscious on the camera?
Now, the purpose of this movie month isn’t to watch all amazing movies, just to watch horror movies to celebrate the cheese, snark, fear, jump scares, crappy make up, excellent story telling, corn syrup gore, and every other staple of modern horror movies, be they worthy of critical acclaim or inclusion in a five dollar bargain dvd set from walmart. But rarely have I seen a movie that tries so hard and falls so short.
My rating is a 1 out of 5 on the Samhain Scare-o-meter.