WillardMoulton's Rating of Severance

Willard's Review of Severance

7 years ago via Rotten Tomatoes


[b][font=Arial','sans-serif][color=#000000]Severence (2006)[/color][/font][/b]

[font=Arial','sans-serif][b][color=#000000]Directed by: Christopher Smith
Produced by: Steve Christian, Michael Kuhn
Written by: James Moran, Christopher Smith[/color][/b][/font]

[font=Arial','sans-serif][b][color=#000000]Cinematography: Ed Wild
Editing: Stuart Gazzard
Soundtrack: Christian Henson[/color][/b][/font]

[font=Arial','sans-serif][b][color=#000000]Actors: Toby Stephens, Claudie Blakley, Andy Nyman, Babou Ceesay, Tim McInnerney[/color][/b][/font]



[font=Arial','sans-serif][color=#000000]Goldilocks and the Three Bears, meet Christopher Smith. Christopher Smith, meet Stanley Kubrick. Stanley Kubrick, meet the B-Movie horror genre. B-Movies, let?s introduce you to the new millenium.[/color][/font]

[font=Arial','sans-serif][color=#000000]When Saw came out, I wasn?t the least bit surprised that the industry of horror films had struck so low a point as to take the gore/special effects sequences of our favorite classic slasher flicks and throw them together and call them the film?s ?gimmick?. It was definitely American B-Movies that inspired the latest craze in filmmaking to be splurges of blood-drenched scenes, and it is certainly not overlooked by critics such as myself who have actually taken the time to enjoy the cult-cinema of the 60?s, through really the 80?s, when lower budget constraints lead to more buckets of paint rather than a stronger selection of screenwriting. However, while in the ?old days?, when a B-Movie was billed next to an A-Movie and a short, in today?s world, most of the B-Movies that are released are given short runs in select theaters before going directly to video. These are the cherished winners, the shining light on the film schools of America that had done during the 90?s an incredible amount of output of marginally disposable horror films. Scream Trilogy, anyone?[/color][/font]

[font=Arial','sans-serif][color=#000000]Interestingly, the new era of filmmaking is doing a fantastic job mimicking the ways of the older cinema/nickelodeon. The direct-to-video horror genre propelled by horror festivals and the pressures some of these young directors must feel from student loans has lead to quite a surplus of incredibly grotesque underground movies.[/color][/font]

[font=Arial','sans-serif][color=#000000]Severance is now the one, though. The film by Christopher Smith borrows heavily on the Saw premise of nonstop surprises and successfully takes it a step further out into the realm of, yes that?s right I?m drawing a parrallel to classics with this thrilling piece of entertainment, Stanley Kubrick. I think Mr. Smith would be proud of that distinction, but he earned it, and if Kubrick was still alive I think he?d get a kick out of this.[/color][/font]

[font=Arial','sans-serif][color=#000000]The plot is far from vague, and for this reason we find ourselves literally engrossed in the action throughout the film. By keeping up with the times while putting a hand right on the pressure of changing world political systems, the film plays right onto our daily phobias and paranoias.[/color][/font]

[font=Arial','sans-serif][color=#000000]It stars a group of weapons manufacurers from Great Britain. They work for a global conglomerate responsible for supplying guns and ammunition to (of course,) armed forces, national security, as well as terrorists. But as we all know, one of those three bears is sure to bite the hand that feeds it. However, while the group is out on a team-building resort getaway in Romania, the question is simple: ?How well does a group of weapons specialists fare when their weapons are stripped and they are left completely abondoned in the middle of nowhere??[/color][/font]

[font=Arial','sans-serif][color=#000000]It might not sound spooky yet, and believe me, they don?t have much to be scared of in the real world, so don?t expect them to act like the Sorority Girl Massacre girls that we?re so used to in even big-budget horrorfilms of today. They seem, especially at first, fairly impervious to fright or even the creepiness of the vacant, run down, low-ceiling and bug-infested house they land themselves in. As an audience, though, we can tell the trouble is brewing just by the dramatic and excellent soundtrack. The guy in the woods with the briefcase may be a big hint as well, but as that the movie plays it safe with the supplemental humor shots, we are constantly brought further into the movie?s suspenseful clamber until by the end we are gasping for breath.[/color][/font]

[font=Arial','sans-serif][color=#000000]The horror movie genre is still running strong, but a sidestep from the normal zombie-fare is currently especially juicy, so grab a bag of popcorn and dim the lights, but don?t pop the mushroom bag open like poor Steve. No, we don?t want you to actually survive this movie. And we won?t pay your severance.[/color][/font]