Sunday, April 30, 2006
Wolf Creek, a movie review. And a pet peeve.
This movie is worth a rental for the clever gore and beautiful scenery (if you are into that kind of thing). The website is fantastic (Wolf Creek).
This being said, I have a huge problem with one part of the whole movie.
Dear Movie Directors, Producers, Screenwriters, and Studio Publicity Agents,
Please do not tell me your movie is ‘based on a true story’ or ‘based on true events’ if the piece of cinema you are peddling is linked to the truth only by the thinnest strand.
Case in point: In the late 1980’s and early 1990’s there was a series of murders of backpackers in Australia. From what I’ve found online (Crime Library.com), it’s a good story. Click on it after reading my rant. The tale on Crime Library is pretty well written.
Wolf Creek is not about this story. It resembles the Backpacker Murders because a) the victims are backpackers, b) it takes place in the Australian Outback, and c) it’s a serial murder situation. That’s about it. Everything else is made right up.
The “making of” documentary has the writer/director Greg McLean saying something along the lines of “I wanted to make an Australian Texas Chainsaw Massacre,” and he did a pretty good job. The beginning is a little slow and there are some problems I could enumerate if I wanted to ruin the movie for you, but overall I’d recommend getting it. Not buy it, but rent it.
The thing about both the beginning and the end is that the level of drama is ratcheted up by the phrase “Based on True Events” and some ending updates which sound newsy.
But IT’S JUST PLAIN NOT TRUE. Nothing about the details of the movie is the least bit true.
Well, neither is the Texas Chainsaw Massacre and they did the same trick (freakin’ John Laroquette’s voiceover is pretty great). Ditto ‘Blair Witch Project.’
Anyone who likes these kinds of movies will know this trick. It’s not new, it’s not all that clever, and it’s not necessary. Anyone who doesn’t like these kinds of movies will not appreciate seeing it. Promise. If you don’t like “slasher” movies, this isn’t for you.
Why couldn’t they have said “Wolf Creek: Boogeyman in the Outback!” and called it good? It’s still a decent horror movie. Not a 5 star rating but a solid 3.
But saying “Wolf Creek: Based on True Events” is silly at best.
I wouldn’t recommend hitchhiking in Australia, though. Actually anywhere.
Hitchhiking = Stranger Danger. The boogeyman might get you.