woensdag 1 juni 2011

Dawning (2009)

I have to admit that ''Dawning'' really caught me off guard. It's one of those rare horror movies that will make your butthole sweat while remaining mostly suggestive. And if you're a talented director with a limited budget, it's a great choice. I had a small flashback but overall it worked suprisingly well!


''Dawning'' takes place in a deserted cabin in the woods (we've been there alright) where a brother and sister visit their father and step-mom. It feels uneasy to say the least. Awkward conversations and an overall tense vibe. But the real tragedy starts when they find their dog who seems to have been attacked. But by what? Shortly after, a stranger appears in their cabin. And let's just say that whatever he brings to the table, was just too much to coope with.
 So we have a great setting somewhere in the woods. The cabin feels really warm but as disaster strikes that all changes. As i said; it's mostyle suggestive. In this case it means that Gregg Holtgrewe focusses on the psychological aspect, and you'll need some good actors for such a job. And luckily he's taken care of that aswell. I couldn't find one misfit. Convincing stuff and determining most of the tension. It's one hell of a struggle that's ready to blow up in everyone's face.

It's amazing how Holtgrewe creates something outside the cabin. It's just a crazy dude telling them a story, he looks attacked though and he's very convincing. The dad (alcoholic 'past') doesn't believe the guy but his son (not the best buddies with his dad) doesn't want to take any risks. It's just one argument that leads to another. It's a sinking ship so you'll know where they'll eventually end up if they don't set aside their differences. It sounds easy, yet it's not something you see everyday in this genre, and that was already enough for me to like this movie. They let a strange story get to them, showing their vulnerability.
In the first lines i wrote that i had a 'flashback', and i don't think i'm far off if i compare this with 2003's ''Dead End'' where an unknown force drives a family crazy while they're driving a road that never seems to end. Amazing stuff, and i'm curious as to how much this movie influenced ''Dawning'' or that it's just coincidence. Anyways, ''Dawning'' stands on it's own in every way and almost (yes, almost) works for the entire stay.

Because it didn't really grab me with the ending. I love the last shot but the rest is too predictable. And normally that isn't a problem for me, but i just expected more this time. Ah well, it's not much if i think about everything this movie has to offer. It has enough to keep you hooked, thrilled and peeing your pants every now and then. Great acting, effective cinematography and a nice delicate soundtrack. Recommended? Definitely!

Score: 88/100



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