THE BREACH (2022)
Lightbulb Film Distribution. On Demand/Download. 10th July
This Canadian horror film opens with a riverside picnic disrupted when a canoe drifts by with mangled, boneless remains on board. The body, or at least what is left of it, is identified as particle physicist Cole Parsons, who had recently rented a remote cabin nearby. Sheriff of the small community of Lone Crow is John Hawkins (Allan Hawco), who was due to head “down south” to his new job, but finds himself dragged into investigating this mysterious death. He brings in coroner Jacob Redgrave (Wesley French) to help and also his ex-girlfriend, who actually has ‘history’ with both men – wilderness guide Meg (Emily Alatalo). As Hawkins digs deeper into the case he discovers Parsons daughter was reported missing and still hasn’t been found, adding to the puzzle.
They decide to head out to the shack in the woods, to see if they can find any clues as to what is going on. What is the weird sound they hear when they get there? What has the scientist been experimenting with whilst living away from society?
The building emits strange noises and creaks and Jacob keeps being bitten by insects – and then (slight spoiler, sorry) Parsons turns up alive! Do we have a scientist meddling in things they should leave well alone? I think so, as a portal to other dimensions is revealed and the film tips into the area of sci fi – though it does throw in some zombie like creatures at the end.
Directed by Rodrigo Gudiño – founding editor of Rue Morgue magazine, so he should know his stuff as it were – this is an adaptation of the 2020 novel by Nick Cutter (pseudonym of Craig Davidson) who co-wrote the movie with Ian Weir – though the credits say it’s based on the Audible serial version.
This starts intriguingly but goes flabby in the mid section (haven’t we all) and proves to be very talky, with a love triangle that adds little to the muddled plotting. However, the sound design is effective and there is strong production design on show. Also worth noting is the score by Slash from Guns ‘n’ Roses (he is also an Exec Producer). The physical make up effects are nicely gooey and gory (credited to Daniel Baker and Chris Cooper) and its well enough helmed by Gudiño – though it can’t help reminding you of other better productions like cabin in the woods classic The Evil Dead and a touch of Lucio Fulci (even the font used for the title treatment feels like it has been chosen purposely to be a callback). So another horror with a retro feel that is neither terrible or indeed particularly good either.