Wake Wood (2010) - The film smartly uses the opening credits for a lot of the setup. A couple Louise (Eva Birthistle) and Patrick (Aidan Gillen) have a younger daughter Alice (Ella Connolly) who is mauled by a dog and dies. The couple leaves the town they are in to live in the small village of Wake Wood. Patrick a veterinarian and Louise a pharmacist seem to setting into the community but the loss of their daughter has strained their relationship. Louise can't let go and Patrick feels she needs to move on. All while the credit are playing.The tone through the music is sedate and meditative and the camera not particularly active.
Things begin to change when there car breaks down on a country road and Louise while looking for the local who lives there runs into a pagan ritual being performed. She does not know what it is but sees the blood covered man emerge from a cocoon. When arriving home on of the participants Arthur, from the event is in their house just so they can know that she was seen too. As the days go on Louise learns from the local woman what the deal is and since she is in such grief she sees it as a way to see her child again.
A unique ritual can be performed where the dead can be brought back to life for three days. Stricken parents should not be making this decision and this couple in there struggle lie about how long the girl has been dead. In the ritual know one should be brought back only if they have been dead less than a year. Its a big contract, a body of a recently dead person is used to pull the spirit into transforming it into the the earlier deceased. Then the parents and the child will be bound for life to the village limits. The child then must go back after three days. This is about grieving and it is a sad thing so you get the feeling while watching that there is no way this is going to turn out well.
What is so wonderfully gruesome about this film is some of the things that need to be done to the receiving corpse prior to the ritual. banging and cutting and crushing. Then of course it the need for living blood and a bit of fire and the couple crack the protective shell and have their daughter back.
Alice is back and the first day is a delight for the family but this is really a temporary condition. These are parents who can not let go so things are going to be strange, and during the next too there are incidents that make the girl more strange and creepy than kind and loving. The film has a nice slow build towards the end and as little Alice gets more and more evil we see why this ritual should not be taken lightly. Overall I think the film delivers in mood proving just how chilling little evil kids can be. Since Alice is a child dead for more than a year she can't be controlled the ways other could and soon the wee one is on a killing spree in the village.
Satisfying in a small film kind of way this is a nice little flick for a dark night. Not great but certainly enjoyable.
As I have done so far this year; I am doing as an experiment my Twitter
account @Soresport is dedicated to following and being followed by
people in and behind the scenes. Then I am also hoping some of them
follow me back. I do fear that Twitter has become too much of a
promotional tool for people in film to actually get those follow backs
but hey its an experiment.