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Wake Wood (2009)


No Score Yet...

Average Rating: N/A
Critic Reviews: 1
Fresh: 1 | Rotten: 0



liked it
Average Rating: 3/5
User Ratings: 1,601

My Rating

Movie Info

Still grieving the death of their only child Alice at the jaws of a crazed dog, vet Patrick and pharmacist Louise relocate to the remote town of Wake Wood where a local pagan ritual gives them three more precious days with her. But, what will they do when it's time for their new daughter to go back?


Drama, Horror, Mystery & Suspense

Jul 5, 2011

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All Critics (21) | Top Critics (2) | Fresh (16) | Rotten (4) | DVD (3)

The sometimes moldy legacy of Hammer Horror gets due tribute from Wake Wood, a preposterous but not entirely unprepossessing supernatural thriller partly backed by the newly resurrected scare shingle.

March 26, 2011 Full Review Source: Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

For all its pre-Christian paganism, demon child imagery, blood and guts, David Keating's rural horror movie is at heart an involving portrait of a young couple struggling to come to terms with the death of a daughter.

March 23, 2011 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Wake Wood at least shows that Hammer is ready to be a player again in the field of horror.

February 11, 2012 Full Review Source: Movie Metropolis
Movie Metropolis

...just another tedious straight-to-video horror effort...

July 1, 2011 Full Review Source: Reel Film Reviews | Comment (1)
Reel Film Reviews

The film cleverly brings together WW Jacobs's celebrated short story The Monkey's Paw with The Wicker Man, and it's both touching and scary.

March 28, 2011 Full Review Source: Guardian

The film's reasonably effective, but never heightens its impact beyond what's on the page.

March 25, 2011 Full Review Source: Daily Telegraph
Daily Telegraph

Low expectations are the key to enjoying Wake Wood. You have been warned.

March 25, 2011 Full Review Source: This is London
This is London

Thoroughly unsettling from start to finish, Wake Wood will please horror fans with its muted palette, ominously creepy atmosphere and neat nods to the best of 70s British horror.

March 25, 2011 Full Review Source: Daily Mirror [UK]
Daily Mirror [UK]

The enveloping creepiness of the village setting scores points, which the film proceeds to squander in careless plotting, imprecise effects and a denouement of arrant silliness.

March 25, 2011 Full Review Source: Independent

A predictable but well-made chiller.

March 25, 2011 Full Review Source: Daily Express
Daily Express

Right from the start there's a cheeky sense of Hammer coming into the 21st century.

March 24, 2011 Full Review Source: The Skinny
The Skinny

Our horror is reduced by a sneaking awareness that the film is making up its grand guignol ground rules as it goes along.

March 24, 2011 Full Review Source: Financial Times
Financial Times

A creepy, poignant story of life and death which surprises with the strength of its ideas.

March 24, 2011 Full Review Source: Little White Lies
Little White Lies

It's a low-budget film that entertainingly takes its audience to the brink of pure absurdity. But it also riffs nastily and effectively...

March 24, 2011 Full Review Source: Guardian

A compelling twist on the Faustian-pact dilemma that builds to a truly memorable, if starkly horrifying, ending.

March 24, 2011 Full Review Source: Radio Times
Radio Times

With deliberate echoes of classic Hammer horror, this moody and inventive thriller gets under our skin with its deeply personal plot, which pays as much attention to horror as emotion.

March 24, 2011 Full Review Source: Shadows on the Wall
Shadows on the Wall

Cinematographer Chris Maris has a keen eye while Brendan McCarthy's dark narrative makes this a worthy frontrunner in Hammer's return to the horror fray.

March 23, 2011 Full Review Source: Sky Movies
Sky Movies

Impressively directed and cleverly written, this is a genuinely chilling British horror film with terrific performances and strong echoes of classic Hammer films.

March 23, 2011 Full Review Source: ViewLondon

Nothing too groundbreaking but a compelling rife on creepily occult British horrors nonetheless.

March 21, 2011 Full Review Source: Empire Magazine
Empire Magazine

An instant folk horror classic.

March 20, 2011 Full Review Source: News of the World
News of the World

The biggest surprise is not that it's hair-raising, but that it's heart-rending too.

March 16, 2011 Full Review Source: Total Film
Total Film

Audience Reviews for Wake Wood

July 19, 2013
Directors Cat
Directors Cat

Super Reviewer

Arthur: How long has your daughter been in the ground?

"The Dead Should Never Be Woken"

Wake Wood is a film that feels like it should be a lot better than it actually is. I loved the idea, but once everything began to play out; it seemed to become a standard slasher. I should probably explain because saying standard slasher could give you the wrong idea about the movie. It's a Pet Semetary-esque plot with some added witchcraft and paganism elements. For the first fifty minutes or so there is no terror to be found, which is not necessarily a bad thing. Slow burn horror films can sometimes be the most effective. So I'm fine with the slow start. What I wasn't fine with was the actual horror scenes. The setup was too good to fall back and become nothing more than a little smarter Friday the 13th. Sure they tried to bring it back to what they promised right at the end, but by then I was kind of turned off to the film.

Two parents lost their daughter, and moved to Wakewood to get away from their past. After being there for months, they discover a ritual the townspeople use to bring their dead loved ones back for three days. There are rules that go along with bringing a loved one back though, the leader of the ritual explains. Failure to obey the rules could bring about consequences. The plot isn't anything new really. It's basically borrowed parts that are put into a new plot. Once again, I would have been fine with that if it had been done better in the end.

I didn't hate the movie and actually thought a few things were well done. I liked the ritual scene and there was nice atmosphere throughout. It's also nice to see Hammer back and at em. This was their first release after coming back. They've made a few more films, most better and at least one worse. Seeing Hammer presents on the front of a DVD cover is a welcome sight for this horror buff. The first film just wasn't great. A decent effort, but it could have been a lot better.

Not a bad film to make my 666th review though.
June 19, 2012
Melvin White

Super Reviewer

Weird movie...
March 20, 2012

Super Reviewer

"What goes on in Wake Wood is not for everyone."

This surprisingly gory little entry into the "evil kid" genre is a good one. In the Irish town of Wake Wood, the dead can return to life to see their loved ones...but only for three days, and only if a very specific set of rules have been followed. A recently arrived couple is so desperate for the return of their nine year old daughter, that they ignore some of the rules to have her back. And while she seems entirely normal at first, as the three days draw to a close, things start going horribly bad.

Wake Wood takes a while to get going, but when it kicks into gear in the last 40 minutes or so, it's pretty epic. Very gory, as I mentioned before, but it also lays on the creepy atmosphere and thankfully keeps the jump scares to a relative minimum. I also liked how the story was kept simple and uncomplicated, there aren't any needless plot twists to muddy the movie. Any fan of horror should give it a shot.
August 3, 2011

Super Reviewer

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