Saturday, September 13, 2014

Film Review: Crowsnest (2012)

Crowsnest (Review)
United States/2012
Format Viewed For Review: Netflix Instant
Netflix Streaming: Yes
Amazon Prime: No

"...the first time I've ever told a film to shut up..."

A group of friends on a trip to a cottage are attacked by an RV...

Can I really say anything else? That's all the film is about. The first 30 minutes of Crowsnest follows this group of friends, who are all incredible douchebags if I may add, as they drive and buy beer. The next 30 minutes follows this group as they are chased by the RV; they get hit by the RV, drive away and cry about it, then get hit again, and repeat. The final 20 minutes or so have the survivors running through the woods looking for cell phone signal. The ending drags forever and is as abrupt as every other found-footage horror film.

Crowsnest offers nothing new to the genre. Worst of all, it offers very little entertainment. I can stand a generic film if it's at least entertaining, but this is simply boring. You go from watching the vacation tapes of 5 unbearable people (like the first hour of Absence) to several boring chases (like Jeepers Creepers, but Jeepers Creepers is actually good) to a boring imitation of The Blair Witch Project. I thought the first encounter with RV was decent, it built up some solid suspense, but then it becomes repetitive and contrived. Other than that decent scene, the rest of the film is boring. There is no suspense, no tension, no realism... there aren't even any jump-scares. There is some gore, but it's not enough to fully wake you up.

I think the worst part of Crowsnest is the intolerable characters. Yes, they are ripped out of every found-footage film ever made, but these somehow manage to be even more annoying than usual. I think this is the first time I've ever told a film to shut up -- I mean, literally, I said, "Shut up already!" to my television. From the first five minutes, you'll know whether you'll like these characters, especially the cameraman Justin. These issues with the characters are amplified because you spend 30 MINUTES watching their vacation tapes.

The acting is all-around mediocre. There mostly passable for the genre. However, whenever the roles become demanding, this cast ridiculously overacts -- hence the "Shut up already!" This is also the same ol' same ol' found-footage film. A lot of wonky camerawork, bad photography, and so on; the camera even malfunctions often, which is odd considering it's a brand new camera. Director Brenton Spencer fails to deliver any horror; the first act is a complete waste of time, the second act starts off promising but fails miserably, and the film ends exactly like anyone would expect.

Overall, Crowsnest is a terrible film. The story has the potential to be unique, but the film opts for dull and bland genre clich├ęs instead. The characters are too annoying, there is a severe lack of horror and suspense, and the film is just downright boring. It's not worth your time, especially if you've seen as many found-footage horror films as I have. (a lot)

Score: 2/10
Parental Guide: Some strong violence and gore, partial nudity.

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