Eden Lake (2008)
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Critic Reviews for Eden Lake
An effectively harrowing Brit thriller-cum-horror pic whose yuppie protags' weekend getaway runs violently afoul of the local youth.
...while Eden Lake is effective, something feels not quite right about cheering for prepubescent kids to get their fatal comeuppance.
The film's one major fault is that Reilly's character repeatedly acts in ways that serve the plot, but which run contrary to rational human behaviour. By contrast, the shattering downbeat ending is well earned and genuinely shocking.
...it's hard to deny that the ultra-downbeat finale feels needlessly mean-spirited.
Works exceedingly well, and will probably stick in your gut for a little while.
Audience Reviews for Eden Lake
As harmless as this film starts out, it soon becomes one of the most ruthless, sadistic and mean horror thrillers of recent years. Once you reach the end you'll be pissed off and never want to see it again. But the road there is admittedly pretty exciting. If you're ignoring the unlikeliness of the hunted and perpetrators running into each other over and over in the forest.
Good horror. Hated the kids in this. Never want to see it again, I have to say. Awful stuff. Really left me feeling disturbed and just yuck.
Ironically I think it's good to see a grindhouse torture movie that actually suggests it has a fraction of intelligence. Director James Watkins doesn't execute an "Eli Roth" and end up with Hostel but gives us something slightly smarter. There are elements of subject matter through out Eden Lake adressing the horrors of twisted adolescents and deciding who is to blame for the crimes seen depicted in the film. However some of the characters react unrealistically to some circumstances in the plot and consequently the story can never be believable to the fullest and cant be taken seiously as it wants to be. Although admirably Eden Lake does have something to say, it never fully manages to grasp it's ideas and be anything more than a wince inducing gore flick. In terms of that it's damn well difficult to sit through and could earn the title as one of the most revolting and sickening horror movies of the last few years. Originality is also not it's strongest point, there are many familiar scenes that look like they were taken from Last House on The Left and other chase in the wood's flicks. But putting aside the fact it's not as smart as it think it is, it too often resorts to cliche's, and runs out of steam eventualy, there's enough twisted gut churining torture and skin slashings that it works at best as a date movie, with the added bonus of a suggestion of substance.
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