Woods of Evil (2005)
By: Markus Zussner on January 10, 2007  |  Comments  |  Bookmark and Share
Maverick (USA). Region 1, NTSC. 4:3. English DD 5.1. 85 minutes
The Movie
Director: Conrad Glover
Starring: Conrad Glover, Ron Douglass, Raine Brown, Christopher Farmer, Nicholl Jones
Screenplay: Conrad Glover
Music: Brian DuFord
Tagline: Where predators become prey
Country: USA
The Woods of Evil. Huh? There ain't nothing evil goin' on in these here woods. This is a low budget digital camera flick just like The Blair Witch Project except without the atmosphere, suspense or acting ability. I already expected it to have that low budget digi-cam look but that's OK. I don't mind what format a horror movie is made on or what budget it has; the content is the most important thing. This type of format works best if it's got an overload of blood, gore, sex and wall to wall nudity.... or if it's as good as The Blair Witch Project.

A trio of stupid criminal wannabe's decide to kidnap the daughter of a rich dude along with her friend from a nightclub and take them to The Woods of Evil in an attempt to make it rich quick. These three idiot non-talented dudes take our helpless non-talented victims to a cabin, tie 'em up, and have needless conversations with them rather than sex for about 84 minutes and that's about it. Oh, and a psycho with a big knife shows up at some point. Yes, someone or something is killing people who happen to venture into The Woods of Evil...

Now this is the Unrated Directors Cut, with Dolby Digital 5.1 sound which usually means there's more to see and hear, but I don't think it's going to make much difference with this movie. The Unrated Directors Cut is goreless with the exception of a poorly executed head smushing scene, so I would have rather watched the standard version to get through the movie quicker.

No originality goes into the creation of the protagonist, who is wearing a tweed hooded jacket and looks like a heavyweight boxer or a wrestler or a fat person out jogging and doing his or her daily exercises. This guy moves so slow a snail would get to the finish line first, so any of the other characters would only need to walk at a fast pace to get miles ahead of him. But no, they just fall over and crawl away. Our victims have a gun so a few shots to the head would finish the killer off, but the gun is merely used to wave insects away. There's no reason for our killer to be out in the park, I mean the woods, stalking and killing other than for the sake of killing time. No tortured childhood, no psychological illness, no revenge to bestow, no evil forces at work here... so why is this guy so pissed off? Maybe it's his parents? No insight or profile is given whatsoever for our psycho. The kills are also unoriginal and uneventful. Remember, a faceful of blood does not a memorable gore moment make. Nobody took the effort to find any genuinely creepy locations to help with the mood of the film either. A good location is half the hard work out of the way. I mean the location seems so aesthetically pleasing that it's hard to believe that something evil lurks there and oh, are those houses I see in the background? The only part of the movie that the Art department decided to set dress is done rather sloppily and with no apparent effort whatsoever. There is a clearing in the park, I mean forest, where there are impaled skulls on stakes, probably to indicate that this is the killers stomping ground. It looks pretty lame and this is further enhanced when our 3 criminals unwittingly stumble across the clearing, and do you think that they can see any of these staked skulls? "Hey dude, look by your feet and to your left and right and in front of you! The skulls, the plastic skulls, look at all the pretty plastic skulls!" Oh hell, just ignore them!

The Central characters of three kidnappers, two kidnap victims, and our evil killer (with a few cannon fodder extras also thrown in) are uninspiring and just dribble boring dialogue throughout. General Hospital or Debbie Does Dallas has more engaging dialogue in one scene than The Woods of Evil has in its entirety. There is no horror in this film, nor is there any drama, suspense or action. Any humour is hard to find whether intentional or unintentional. I did laugh a lot though, but mostly due to losing my grip on sanity.
Low budget tourist digi-cam/porno quality. All of the film has been shot in the day. Colours are very digi-crisp and fruity. I mean green is really green if you know what I mean.
Now with 5.1 Digital sound or so it boasts on the cover. We have Audio hiss, even if it is subtle. There is nothing special about the sound; it is very sub standard so we don't have anything coming out at ya from the speakers and my Subs remained silent throughout. No rumbling, not even a single vibration. Don't even consider writing home to mama about the audio quality.
Extra Features
No Audio Commentary and thank the Lord.

Only other Trailers here. I got a kick out of the Trailers because they are the best part of the whole DVD. It looks like they incorporate sex, nudity and lashings of gore in the rest of these offerings and they certainly look a helluva lot more engaging.

Trailers: Lost Things, The Evil One, The Wickeds (with Ron Jeremy), Tears of Kali, The Demon, Zombie Night.
The Verdict
The Woods of Evil has a really great cover and it needs to because this is the only way the moviemakers are ever going to get anyone to watch this film. Once passed the cover art you're going to regret ever putting this movie into your DVD player. Technically there is nothing wrong with the film; the filmmakers obviously know the techniques of moviemaking but there's just nothing going on in this lame and tame piece of work. Without sex, sleaze or graphic gore The Woods of Evil has nothing to offer in any way whatsoever.
Movie Score
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