Viewed – 06 November 2021 Netflix
I can’t say I approached this ‘reboot’ latest entry in the long running franchise with much excitement. I also wasn’t the biggest fan of the first movie despite the appeal of Eliza Dushcu. This time around a concerned father (Mathew Modine) arrives in a small town looking for his missing daughter. Flash back several weeks earlier and said daughter and her friends decide to go hiking in the rural mountain region, despite warnings of ‘stick to the oath’ from the locales.
So far, so predictable. However after stumbling onto the booby-trapped territory of a local cult (in place of hillbilly cannibals) the friends must battle for survival. What made this feel a bit more fresh and to a degree more realistic is that the cult are some sort of throwback to early settlers who have shunned modern society and prefer to be left alone. It’s not until the hikers treat them as a threat that they turn nasty. Interesting approach. Add to this the father and daughter subplot that bookends the movie and I admit I got rather caught up in what was happening.
There’s some memorably gory deaths, which is to be expected and a few cliched characters, yet with lead actress Charlotte Vega delivering more than the usual ‘final girl’ performance… this may not rewrite the rule book, but still managed to be effective. Worth a watch.