Wolf Creek

Wolf Creek
Cast: John Jarratt, Kestie Morassi, Cassandra Magrath
Studio: The Weinstein Company
Rating: 7.5/10

CORPORATE LINE: It was supposed to be the vacation of a lifetime in the Australian Outback – full of fun, sun and adventure. But what happened to a trio of twenty-something backpackers took a wrenching detour into the depths of unrelenting terror.

Based on true events, WOLF CREEK is the haunting story of their unthinkable ordeal – a mounting white-knuckle nightmare so real it was destined to become horror legend. WOLF CREEK is a startlingly intense motion picture experience of rapidly escalating dread and suspense. At the 2005 Sundance Film Festival, the film – written and directed by Melbourne’s Greg McLean – was acclaimed as a daring, original blend of visually hypnotic thriller with unbearably scary movie.

The chillingly believable events begin as freewheeling, college-aged pals Liz (Cassandra Magrath), Kristy (Kestie Morassi) and Ben (Nathan Phillips) head out for a holiday hike in stunning Wolf Creek National Park to see its mysterious meteor crater. When they return, their car won’t start. Trapped in the vast emptiness of the wilderness – all they can do is wait for rescue.

Luckily, as night falls, along comes colorful local bushman Mick (John Jarratt) and his massive truck, offering a tow to safety. But as the sun comes up the next morning, it becomes shockingly apparent that Mick has no intention of fixing their car or letting them leave the Outback…ever again. As Liz, Kristy and Ben search for any conceivable way out, WOLF CREEK plunges towards an unforgettable climax.

THE MOVIE: Wolf Creek is a horror film. Many films call themselves horror films but are merely pretenders; House of Wax for example.

The actors do a phenomenal job scaring the hell out of the audience. You buy that they are horrified which in turns takes the tension up a notch. Wolf Creek makes viewers uneasy and that is a huge asset. There isn’t a moment where you feel comfortable unless you take a break to the restroom.

Wolf Creek is unrelenting terror.

Writer and director Greg McLean doesn’t take the usual horror film path with lots of twits-and-turns. He opts instead to push and push and push the terror to higher and higher levels. As good as the movie it, it is also torture. Viewers will wait for Wolf Creek to fall back on the Hollywood clichés as so many horror movies do. It never happens. And that is why Wolf Creek feels so relentless.

FRANKLY: The Weinstein Company picked an odd time to put out Wolf Creek. Christmas isn’t exactly the best time to put out a horror movie. Had this been released during Halloween it’d be a hit. It’s not certain that people will want to leave the merriment of the season for the gore of Wolf Creek.

+ Charlie Craine

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