Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Film Review: Husk (2011)

Husk (Review)
United States/2011
Format Viewed For Review: Netflix Instant
Netflix Streaming: No
Amazon Prime: No

"...a hit-or-miss movie."

While driving through rural Nebraska, a group of friends crash and search for help at a secluded farmhouse nearby—unaware of the terror lurking in the cornfield...

Husk starts off running. You probably spend less than three minutes with this generic group of characters—which consists Chris, Scott, Brian, Johnny, and Natalie— before they crash. They end up stranded next to a cornfield, but Johnny has vanished. So, Brian and Scott enter the cornfield and head for a nearby farmhouse. After spotting who she believes to be a teenager in the cornfields, Natalie heedlessly enters the cornfield, too, which causes Chris to follow behind her. Anyway, they're attacked by the scarecrows. The survivors find shelter in the farmhouse since the scarecrows can't leave the fields. It's a fairly basic slasher with a supernatural twist. I usual like traditional serial killer slashers more, but I liked the supernatural twist in this one. It leads to an ineffective ending, though.


Husk is a hit-or-miss movie. For starters, this film's complete disregard for character development can be seen as good and bad. On one hand, it starts off instantly. On the other hand, you just don't care about any of these characters. You don't care if they die because you don't know them—you can't recognize them—and that makes the film less effective. It has some bloody visuals here and there, but the hectic camerawork makes you miss most of the good stuff. There are plenty of jump-scares, but there is a lack of suspense. You won't be at the edge of your seat during this one. Of course, it is also contrived. Characters are stupid for the sake of pushing the plot forward. However, in terms of character, I was happy to see the film didn't follow a generic kill list—you might not be able to predict who will survive this one, unlike other slashers.

The acting was okay. CJ Thomason and Devon Graye performed well enough. I mean, the cast won't be winning any awards, but it was at least somewhat believable. The film looked decent, too. The camerawork was medicore, but I liked the setting and style of the film. The music was forgettable, though. I liked the designs for the scarecrows; the make-up wasn't half-bad, either. The film was written and directed by Brett Simmons. On one hand, I congratulate Simmons for trying to change the slasher formula. There were some very creative ideas in here. On the other hand, I think Simmons could work on his character development. He doesn't create any notable suspense, either.

Overall, Husk is a decent movie. I liked its original elements, such as its supernatural twist. It's not a very effective horror film due to its lack of character and suspense, though. If you need to kill 80 minutes and you're a fan of the genre, this is worth a rental. If you're expecting a bloody, exciting, and horrifying slasher, you'll have to look elsewhere.

Score: 5/10
Parental Guide: Strong violence and blood.

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