A DIRECTOR’S CUT: MONSTERS IN THE WOODS ** USA 2012 Dir: Jason Horton. 80 mins
An amusingly bogstandard tent-based scene of coitus-interruptus – with a fake-boobed, squeaky bimbo chased through the woods – turns out to be cheesy slasher movie footage overseen by a tiny crew in the Great Bear Mountains. Director Glenn Plummer has been pressured by his producers to shoot some T & A & gore for his otherwise sedate indie drama, but didn’t bank on a bunch of spider-like “Hell-hounds” invading the shoot and threatening the apocalypse.
Plummer, a hugely prolific character actor whose career encompasses mainstream fare like SPEED and SAW II, is fun as the embittered filmmaker, but this attempt at a latter-day creature feature is weakened by the kind of nudge-nudge self-referential shtick that was getting tired even by 1997. Do we need another horror movie in which a character laments that black guys are always the first to die? Have we not already reached the legal limit on genre flicks that add faux-print damage and VHS-style interference for no good reason? Plummer aside, the highlights all involve the engagingly old-school monsters.
Review by Steven West