, 01 Nov 2009
Once every while a movie comes along that leaves such a punch in its final moments that its final message outweighs any other aspect of the film.
New Aussie horror The Dying Breed opens in a rather lengthy way, delivering an insight into four characters without really giving you a shred of information. Geared firmly at the character of Nina who has lots of meaningful moments, flashbacks and visions of events that occurred to her sister in a rural location sometime earlier. The movies characters all have headed to a strange backwater in search of the site of the mysterious Tasmanian Tiger, something that is as great a myth as Bigfoot. While Nina acts all weird and deep, the others all seem to share a mutual dislike for each other forming two parties. But as they feud, they all miss completely the tensions that surround them.
My opening paragraph may seem a little confused, but to be honest with you it all is pretty much, there are little explanations given as to why people are how they are, or why they behave the way they do; its all done in that way where the movies creators have tried to be on a higher intellectual plain than us mere mortals. The truth of the matter is, despite their best efforts its not very deep at all.
Now saying this, The Dying Breed is not a bad film, because what it does do is gather a couple of menacing factors and sticks them together. First up you have the issue of the Tasmanian Tiger, a creature that lives in isolation and is only rumored to exist, rumour suggests that the only reason its never been seen is because those that see it are eaten, and logic would tell you that such an illusive animal would be a little on the protective side to protect its lifestyle. The second and far more troubling is that back in the days of Australia being a prison one of the convicts known as Alexander The Pieman escaped and somehow managed to survive for a rather long time, well long enough to create some descendants, clue to his habits revolve around his nickname.
What you have in The Dying Breed is a good old-fashioned tale of Deliverance style locals and the wonder of cannibalism. The result of which, despite the producers best efforts to make the characters rather unlikeable; is quite a gross out movie offering filled with blood, gore and sometimes worse. Its all actually quite disturbing territory that harks back to the 1980s video nasty era.
The punches are the basis of the movies success, because from the moment you enter the second half of the movie your transported into a variety of horrifically unpleasant circumstances, and disturbing visuals. Punch, punch, punch! Once the movie gets going its fairly relentless, characters are dispatched in continuously worse methods as it becomes apparent that the locals are clearly the descendants of The Pieman, and that Ninas sister undoubtedly had some sort of nasty encounter with these locals.
The clear difference with this movie is that it packs two very big final punches one of which leads you to a false ending. And if that were not enough the text that appears onscreen just before the credits roll lead you on a wild and furious search online, because the story ends in such a way to make you wonder if the film could in fact be based on some true facts. And quite disturbingly, potentially it is.
Its grubby looking, broody, its empty on the character building front, but its actually pretty good entertaining viewing. And the sort of thing that keeps you thinking long after the credits roll. If nothing else it will give you some visuals to haunt your mind.
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