19 May 2014

Review - 'Savaged' is an Extremely Silly Approach to the Revenge Horror

Director: Michael S. Ojeda
Writer: Michael S. Ojeda
Stars: Amanda Adrienne, Tom Ardavany, Ronnie Gene
Running Time: 95 mins
Sub-Genre: Revenge, Supernatural,
Release: 2014 (UK DVD)

A deaf girl is brutalized by a murderous gang who are then hunted by her when the bloodthirsty spirit of an Apache warrior inhabits her lifeless body.

There is nothing wrong with a little exuberant horror hybrid, I mean we are all guilty to loving some regardless of how much we go against them, but there are some that take on these hybrids without being aware of the savvy attitude that should be taken when delivering something so out-of-the-ordinary. Savaged is exactly that; a hybrid horror that doesn't play up to its title, nor does it make it clear that it is perhaps one of the most far fetched horrors to hit the screen in a long time.

Savaged is a film to be admired when understood, but when you realise the film neither winks at its approach nor pokes fun at its premise you can't help but feel confused at what direction Ojeda was trying to take here; as for a film so over-the-top you wonder why it was played with such a straight face.

You have to give it points for effort as Savaged makes the most of its micro budget, but the film is too silly and messy to appreciate its qualities; how could you appreciate the horror when the thought behind it is an Apache king's spirit has taken over the body of a dead deaf woman. If I had known the film was to be this dumb and this ridiculous then maybe I might have left it, but when you see Bloody Disgusting review it with a powerful 5 stars, you can't help but want to watch it; boy have my expectations of them decreased.

For a film of such low visibility however it has some convincing acting and strong horror, but of course this is said before the main victim is possessed by the soul of an angry Apache, and before she starts back flipping in mid-air, and before she becomes an unstoppable warrior who lets out a laughable victory screech before killing her rapists. In other words, it all becomes too much to bear in a film that is so ridiculous it makes Jason X look completely normal. Note: I could have worded that better, but I'm not quite sure how to make a metaphor out of a film like Savaged, that's how weird it is.

Could Savaged have been handled better? Perhaps if it was in the hands of someone who understood the genre better, but I have to give it credit for the highly intense first 30 minutes; but after that you will never see a film go downhill as quick like you will when watching Savaged. To put it simply, after a half hour the film completely goes down the toilet, and it is never able to claw its way back out regardless of all its ambition.

I Spit On Your Grave meets Scooby-Doo in this outrageously silly revenge horror that approaches the hybrid in a completely unethical way, playing its dumb and exuberant premise with a dead-straight face regardless of how unintentionally hilarious the events turn out. Talk about savaging a strong idea.

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