DAWN OF THE BEAST (REVIEW)
Dir. Bruce Wemple
Reviewer. Martyn Wakefield
A group of students on the hunt for Bigfoot set off for a weekend in the woods but get more than they bargained for when they find something much more sinister lurking in the woods.
From the outset, DAWN OF THE BEAST does not mess around as previous occupants are hunted and killed by something in the shadows. The tense moments instantly grab the viewer and hook them in and as soon as the opening credits finish it soon becomes apparent that this film didn't have the budget for the long haul. The cast put away poor exposition, filling space with conversations on ABV and generally waste away the minutes in a 80 minute film.
There is, however, a very big trick up it's sleeve that could prove the saviour to this terror in the woods. What is sold as a film of a band of youths scouting for Bigfoot actually becomes a lot more interesting when the real monsters turn up. There are hints dropped that there is no Bigfoot but as the film moves towards it's ultimate climax, we learn that the Wendigo and it's following monsters are much more of a threat than the monster they were looking for.
It's not quite GODZILLA VS KONG but there is plenty to enjoy when the real premise of the film kicks in, and as with GODZILLA, the worst thing here is the human drama which only becomes relevant when they start falling one by one. The hunting, the stalking and the killing is all entertaining and the bloodshed is plentiful, and more importantly, practical.
I've yet to see a film that presents Bigfoot as a big, bad terrifying monster to meet the likes of other horror icons however this film tries to bring something new and partly succeeds through committing to the twist that drives the film into a new direction from the one it sets out and is advertised as so give it a chance, fast forward the momentary stillness of the character development and you're left with a monster feature that is entertaining, brutal and at moments, terrifying.
It's inventive and a brawl once you get past the first 45 minutes.