When I first heard about this film I was really interested in what it had to offer. I liked the title, I liked the idea and I liked the spooky looking little girl on the promo posters.
More often than not I get this type of thing wrong – I see an awesome trailer or a decent piece of artwork and I think I’m in for the horror ride of a lifetime.
So, did I get it wrong again this time?
Yeah I pretty much got it wrong again – this was a bit of a turd at best but it tried really hard at times ( which is commendable ).
I think the whole idea of a school in the woods somewhere is perfect for the Found Footage setting but only if it’s done correctly – this wasn’t.
Anyway, I don’t really want to make your mind up for you so read through the rest of the review and see if there’s anything that appeals to your horror taste!
The School in The Woods follows a group of college students as they make their way through an abandoned school in the woods of Louisiana.
They have heard that this school is a center point for paranormal activity so they are there filming some sort of class project ( on the paranormal one would think! ).
Well the school doesn’t let them down. Or, as the blurb on the movie bio reads…
“And now the school in the woods is going to teach them a lesson in fear…”
Yeah I know that’s not exactly the longest plot description I’ve ever penned but that’s really all there is to the story line – some Found Footage efforts work best with smaller plots ( this one didn’t! )
I felt that director Tony Fox tried his best to sit down and list all the successful Found Footage cliches out there then cram them into this…film?
Certain parts were pretty good but they were soon drowned out by really stupid and immature scenes that were never going to work.
I heard somewhere that Fox opted to shoot the film in 5 to 10 minute real-time shots. So you’ve got rather tired cliches being fit into long low budget shots through a camcorder…
A recipe for disaster really!
Another title that missed the mark by a long shot I’m afraid – I couldn’t care less what happened to this group of students after about 25 minutes of running time ( and the bloody thing went on for over 90 mins! ).
Some of the actors were pretty decent but the rest were absolutely cardboard in their delivery, reaction and effort ( what was up with that ex-girlfriend character? ).
The acting side of things really took a nose dive when a couple turn up at the school for shelter halfway through the film. Where Mr. Fox found these two beauties I’ll never know ( homeless shelter one would think! ).
Thankfully they did decide to use the creepy little girl on the promo poster from time to time and this was the high point for the film. She was used sparingly but she delivered a pretty cool creepy presence ( which was desperately needed in the film ).
At the end of the day though it was nothing more than another Found Footage disappointment. I kept waiting for the ‘good stuff’ to happen but the film just got worse.
Nice idea executed poorly I’m afraid.