Backwoods (2009)

Genre(s): Horror
Genius Products || R - 84 minutes - $14.95 || June 23, 2009
Reviewer: Brian Oliver || Posted On: 2009-06-29


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.:: F I L M ::.
The Film

S P E C I A L
.: F E A T U R E S :.

Special Features

.:: V I D E O ::.
Video

.:: A U D I O ::.
Audio

.:: O V E R A L L ::.
Overall
.::MOVIE INFORMATION::.
Director: Marty Weiss
Writer(s): Anthony Jaswinski (written by)
Cast: Ryan Merriman, Haylie Duff


.::DVD INFORMATION::.
Supplemental Material:
    None


Technical Information:
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Widescreen (1.78)
  • English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: None

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.::THE FILM::.

IMAGE

Plot: When a gaming engineer (Haylie Duff) is asked by her boss (Craig Zimmerman) to join a company paintball battle in the remote wilderness, she eagerly accepts. But when the woods reveal a hidden band of savage survivalists, the city folks must come to terms with their own brutal killer instincts ó or suffer an unthinkable fate.

Backwoods is a horror movie thatís been made plenty of times before, from 2003ís Wrong Turn to The Hills Have Eyes and probably countless other low budget indie flicks (one I recently saw in the past couple years, called Bloodlines, bears a striking resemblance).

The movie actually was a little better than I had expected, but thatís really not saying much since I was expecting a complete and utter turd. Haylie Duff, older sis of pop singer/actress Hilary Duff, is alright as the female lead with Ryan Merriman (Final Destination 3) playing the slightly worrisome guy with the hots for Haylie. The two leads, like the movie itself, arenít really that interesting other than they look good running and screaming for their lives but when you have a script and story that doesnít allow for character development (of course, itís not trying to be the next Halloween anyway), I canít fault the actors for what could be considered faulty performances, so with that in mind, Duff and Merriman hold their own.

The rest of the cast, like in any horror movie, is pretty much expendable and a way to show off a death and allow the body count to rise. If you think the leads are one-dimensional, just wait to see the rest of the gang (and this includes the inbred religious nuts).

The film itself isnít really special, you get a lot of violence but itís not especially bloody or gory so any horror purist will probably skip the movie anyway, but for me I can appreciate a movie that can be violent without getting out of control (itís too bad the story wasnít any better).

However, even though Backwoods is just another indie horror flick, it did manage to keep me hooked for the 80-minute duration. That being said, be warned it is pretty generic (from the direction to the acting) so keep that in mind as you decide whether or not to buy it when you see the DVD on the $5 shelves at Wal Mart in a couple months...



.::SPECIAL FEATURES::.

Other than trailers for other RHI Entertainment releases, thereís nothing. In fact, itís just a basic menu with two choices: Play or Scene Selection.



.::AUDIO & VIDEO::.

IMAGE

Backwoods is presented with a 1.78 aspect ratio that is acceptable but nothing great. Some scenes easily show off some pixilation while others arenít that sharp, but since this was a made-for-TV movie, itís better than expected, for what thatís worth.

The same can be said for the solo Dolby Digital 5.1 track. The movie has a lot of ďdialogueĒ, most of which is comprised of blood-curdling screams than anything and a generic horror score.



.::OVERALL::.

Backwoods isnít a special film, just another generic independent horror flick that will no doubt be forgotten very soon and be placed on the bargain shelf at Wal-Mart. The movie, however, wasnít terrible but I could not recommend it and instead I say to rent something like Wrong Turn, at least then you get a decently suspenseful story with a good looking cast led by the delectable Eliza Dushku.