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Barricade

Germany/USA 2007
produced by
Timo Rose, Joe Zaso, Ted Geoghegan (executive), John Orth (executive) for Rosecalypse, 9 Films International, Cinema Image Productions, Starving Kappa Pictures
directed by Timo Rose
starring Raine Brown, Joe Zaso, André Reissig, Manoush, Thomas Kercmar, Timo Rose, Andreas Pape, Sebastian Gutsche, Tanja Kraus, Ellen Tanumihardja, Dirk Glücks, Michael Hoppe, Ramon Kaltenbach, Ray Estevez, Christian Reckert, Lars Rohnstock, Marc Rohnstock, Martin Rüdel
written by Ted Geoghegan, Timo Rose, music by Timo Rose, special effects by Timo Rose, Olaf Ittenbach

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Michael (Joe Zaso) goes on a camping trip with Nina (Raine Brown), his secret love who has been coming to visit him from the USA, and David (André Reissig), who's a bit of a pervert but also a gentleman. As yozu would expect, there are a few tensions on the trip, and the usual mishaps happen - like their car's batery breaking down -, but essentially the trip is bringing Micheal and Nina - who is fighting over custody for her daughter back in the states - closer together ... and this wouldn't be much of a film, right ?

Then though Mark (Timo Rose) shows up, a creepy guy who urges them to leave the forest they are camping in because his parents died here - but they figure he's just a looney and chase him away. But of course they should have listened to his advice, because the forest is full of maniacs who are into cannibalism, and since Michael, Nina and David are all humans, they might be on the maniacs' menu ... and sure enough, before you know it David's gone, and when the others go looking for him, Michael walks into a bear trap, and when Nina wants to go fetch help to free him she loses her way, and instead ends up in the maniacs' house in the woods, where they keep their victims - and here she finds Michael again, all tied up. And she finds Mark, who is actually one of the maniacs ...

But Nina isn't one to give up easily, and against all odds, she manages to free Michael and together they fight their way out of the house. But the maniacs are still hot on their trail and eventually catch up, and all seems already lost - when a mysterious hunter (Thomas Kercmar) shows up who claims he has been trailing the maniacs for more than a year and only waits for the right moment to make his kill. Nina soon realizes the hunter is about as looney as the maniacs, takes away his gun, shoots away his hand and then gets rid of the maniacs one by one ...

 

On the plus side, this film is well-made, and looks incredibly slick especially considering it's an independent, and the gore effects are especially well-crafted. Plus it makes an attempt at fleshing out characters not usually found in this kind of film. And Raine Brown gives a powerful performance, also not usually found in this kind of film (independent or mainstream). On the negative side though, this film is too clearly reminiscent of both The Texas Chainsaw Massacre and The Hills have Eyes (the originals, of course) to really come across as something fresh, its aethetics way too often suggest nothing more than a well made videoclip rather than an actual feature, and the characterisations are all a bit banal after all and result in way too many unimportant dialogue scenes. Still, the film is no total loss, it's just not great.

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
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shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
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tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
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On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD