Joe Dante presents TRAIL OF BLOOD (2011), while campy and cliched, it does afford a minute tinge of psychological terror. Just do not get your hopes up. It is a simple slasher flick with a few twists and turns thrown in to make it slightly watchable than the average independent horror film. Fortunately in this case, the characters lack the annoyance factor many of their B-movie counterparts seem to suffer. Of course, it must be said that the overall concept for the TRAIL is not all original. Luckily, we can appreciate that is better than Leprechaun: Back 2 Tha Hood and other bargain bin horror flicks, but it is no ALYCE KILLS, which is an awesome flick.
A leisurely camping trip for seven friends becomes a bloody nightmare as they discover the dead bodies of a couple on vacation in the woods. Believed to be the killers by a deranged discharged Marine veteran (Trevor Torseth) and his silent girlfriend (Maggie VandenBerghe) is held hostage and have to suffer through grisly tests in order to make them pay for an alleged crime.
I find it hilarious how the DVD cover for these B-films feature weapons that are either not used in the film–or not shown as prominently throughout the film. An ax is in the hands of both the main antagonist and the main protagonist Jim (Tim Barraco) on the front and back sides of the DVD cover, but get this–there is no ax in the entire film. As for the film itself, for starters, it works with what it has. Obviously it is not shot on a grand budget and some of the violence in the film is unintentionally cheesy, however the tension and drama it creates makes up for it. The viewer quickly establishes the antagonists as being unstable and deadly with their own sick ideas of fun and justice.
Jim and friends were written a bit better than the standard “dreadful” written protagonists present in other independent horror films (even some mainstream films), alas at least you can still look forward to the standard pigeonholed familiarities that are cliches of this genre. Jim and the Marine veteran appear to be in a moral struggle against one another. Jim sticks to his honorable and heroic ideas of what a Marine should be and the veteran with his pessimistic and sadistic ideals. The climax of the film may be seen to some as unsatisfactory but could also be seen as a twist to the classic movie resolutions
All told, do not expect this film to be any good.
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