Saturday, April 28, 2007

Wicked Little Things (2006)

Another film in the "8 Films to Die For" series, Wicked Little Things is a mildy entertaining, if by the numbers, zombie movie that has a moment or two worth viewing.

The story is a familiar one - mom brings her two daughters out to the long abandoned rural family farmhouse to start over after some drama-inducing tragedy leaves the family bonds strained. The older daughter is rebellious and judgmental, listens to bad metal with her Trans Am driving friends and generally has a bad attitude. The younger daughter is wide-eyed and naive, optimistic and carries a dolly around with her whenever she wanders into the spooky woods on her own.

The town has an even spookier past as it is the site of a long forgotten mine shaft disaster where a number of children were killed in an "accident". The dead children now roam the woods at night as the living undead, zombies who feed on pigs left by crazed, rosary praying hillbillies who also spend a fair portion of their time twitching their eyes and painting house doors with blood.

You name the horror movie cliche, and it's probably in this one. The story is very predictable, stocked with loads of fake scares, bad dialogue and goofy characters. The ending is exactly as you expect it would be and when it's all over you really didn't have to do a whole lot of thinking at all.

My last point of criticism is something I share with The Fucking Beard which is that children are hard to work into a scary movie with any level of success. The idea of violating the innocence that all kids have is harder to pull off than it might sound because it's just too obvious. While I like the idea of kids as flesh-eating zombies killing horny teenagers with pickaxes (and really, who doesn't?), the execution didn't work for me. The zombies, after all, were supposed to be around 100 years old, but their clothing was still fresh and their hair was still neatly combed. A lot could have been done with these little monsters to make them a tad more of what the film's title promised.

Maybe they were trying to keep some sense of how cute these kids are when they showed them chowing down on guts and limbs (a nice grisly touch by the way), or maybe they wanted you to be sympathetic towards them but it just didn't do it for me. I was impressed with a lot of the camera work in the dark , foggy forest, however. I'll give them that.

In all honesty, the history of the movie was more interesting to me than the actual movie. Originally titled both "The Children" and then simply "Zombies", Wicked Little Things was originally to be directed by Tobe Hooper. One can only imagine how this would have turned out had he been behind the helm. As it is, the movie didn't really do much for me.

Fear: 1, Gore: 2, Creepiness: 1, Entertainment: 2, Nightmares: 0

- Complaint Dept

No comments: