Wednesday, 10 June 2015

"The Cutting Room" - UK DVD review

Something nasty is lurking in the woods for Hollyoaks actor Parry Glasspool and his college friends, in Warren Dudley’s “The Cutting Room”, which is out now on UK DVD.
A group of media students are making a documentary about cyber-bullying. But as their film takes shape, they decide to focus it on the case of a missing girl, who disappeared from their college after receiving multiple nasty messages through social media.
Realising that this wasn’t an isolated incident, and that other girls have disappeared after getting involved with the same unsavoury chap. They decide to check out the remnants of a disused military bunker, located deep in the nearby forest, which they believe is being used as a shooting gallery by the local junkies and was probably the last known whereabouts of each of the missing girls.
Unfortunately, once inside, they encounter something far more sinister than local smack heads and getting back out in one piece through the vast labyrinth of dark tunnels is going to be no easy task.
Filmed in and around the old Newhaven Fort in East Sussex, this is yet another one of those ‘found footage’ type films, shown entirely from the perspective of the groups cameras, which is not a sub-genre I’m particularly fond of I’m afraid. The film does have some genuinely creepy moments, such as when they first go inside the old bunker and encounter a disturbing figure, and the film does its best to show the claustrophobic atmosphere of the old building.
But, the story’s set up was a bit on the slow side in my view, plus there were a few things that seemed rather silly. Without giving too much away, on at least one occasion they had the opportunity to call the police, but instead chose to put themselves in harms way again (can’t be more specific without letting slip major spoilers), which just seemed kind of dumb. Also, the film was a little too reminiscent of “The Blair Witch Project” for my liking (which the film makers even acknowledge at one point).
The disc comes with a 25 min “Making of” featurette, which includes the cast’s screen tests, teaser trailers, rehearsal footage, unused out-takes, behind the scenes footage and even a music video from all-girl rock band Maid of Ace, who’s song ‘Dick Head’ is used in the film (and girls, if you do any gigs in Lincolnshire, I’ll be sure to come see you play).
Now, whether you will like the film, will depend greatly on your love of low budget movies. Director Warren Dudley has written, produced and directed a number of features prior to this, and obviously knows what he’s doing, and makes the best of the available locations (I certainly wouldn’t want to get stuck underground in a disused bunker at night) but the film is somewhat constrained by its low budget trappings. However, I will say that the old fashioned song that plays over the beginning and end credits is certainly one of the most haunting juxtapositions I’ve EVER seen in a film.
The film is out now on UK DVD from Three Wolves entertainment.
We're currently running a competition to win DVD copies of this film (UK & Eire only). Click HERE to enter.
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