Scarce (2008) Review
Written by: BlackTequilaKiss
Thank you to Daph on HM who introduced me to this fantastic little independent gem. I had no idea of what to expect despite what I had heard of the plot. It had the potential to be a very bad, cheesy film but thanks in part to the acting and the direction of the film it was actually an exhilarating experience that kept me hooked.
It starts off slow but with a nice smooth pace so you don't become tired of the film, continues that way for a pace and then hits you when you least expect it. It is psychologically disturbing and will test any person who watches it, but it is worth the time to check out.
Plotline- Three snowboarding friends are on their way to Jersey. But when given false directions they end up in the middle of nowhere, a fight ensues where the car crashes and one of the friend's is badly injured. Leaving him behind the two go to the only cabin in sight where they meet a local. However he is hiding a sinister secret and as the film progresses they are plunged into a nightmare. Now they must try to escape barefoot through the frozen wilderness.
One of the most refreshing things I found about the movie was that there was no women. At the beginning and end they are seen for a brief period but much of the focus throughout the movie centres on the three male friends. I also found it refreshing that for a independent, the actors actually worked the roles particularly well.
Typical guys yes but they kept focus when on screen and it was hard not to become invested in their characters.
That's why when things turn truly nasty, you actually have gained a considerable amount of sympathy for them, therefore making the crueller scenes more harder to take.
That said Steve Warren as Ivan one of the locals. One of the monsters, he looked perfect. From the dirty teeth to the whispering way he spoke he was an awful character and his comeuppance was more the beautiful for it.
Oh I loved the cinematography. Snow backdrops, my one weakness, looked beautiful. So any scenes in the snow captured my heart and soul, bloody scenes done in such comparative areas are a beauty to watch. The creepy undergrounds where people were kept were very menacing and sent shivers up my back. I just think they made the best of what they had and did a fantastic job.
I was surprised by how much I loved the music. It was never hard or harsh but always softer. (Forgive the opening titles that is). It kept a balance and the gentle strum of the piano chords against scenes was a wonderfully accomplishment.
Gore? Frickin' heck!! Seriously, low budget but the gore looked true as ever. I never once thought I was looking at cheap, cheesy effects but something more refreshed. The fact that everything looked so real was probably a minus because some scenes were so admittedly cruel that it hurt to watch them. The showing of the spine for instance, was a particular hard scene to watch. I'm a tough cookie but even this pushed me a little.
There are flaws however.
Time was a factor. It seemed to take a fair while to get to the centre of the story and there are times you wish it would pick up speed a little. The women were one dimensional and so at the end, you ought to have pity for them, but barely have any.
But you know what? Even with the flaws this is a consistent little horror. It piles on the shocks, it draws you in, takes away characters you love and respect. It is a pleasing little movie that should appeal to the gore hounds out there. It has some great characterisation and keeps the story flowing, it is just a fantastic watch.
By the way little tip if you decide to watch this, it might be best not to eat beforehand. Just saying, don't say I didn't warn you lol.
Still a fantastic little film that needs to be seeked out and respected for that fact it can do more than most horror's can and with a lesser budget, that is true passion right there. Brilliant!
Get the popcorn (or not), get ready and have a blood-tastic time. Mwah!
*This movie is dedicated to morguex. A great friend who has looked out for me no matter what. This review is in your honour morguex, thanks for everything. Kisses* Peace. BTK.