Director: Bobcat Goldthwait
Writer: Bobcat Goldthwait
Cast: Bryce Johnson, Alexie Gilmore
I found World’s Greatest Dad to be one of the best comedies of the past five years, it was an intelligent, funny and twisted movie that really surprised me. So after hearing that the same director Bobcat Goldthwait was trying his hand at horror, Bigfoot horror nonetheless, I was excited. A little skeptical since going from comedy to horror is quite a great difference, but I was more than willing to give him the benefit of the doubt.
Willow Creek follows a young couple who travel to Humboldt County, California to film a documentary about bigfoot (or sasquash– whatever you want to call him.) Their plans were to go to the original filming sight in the forest where the infamous Patterson-Gimlim film was made, from the seventies.
After rendezvousing with the locals, and finding out most people aren’t welcome in the forest, they decide they are ready to venture off…. Now, here’s what made me a little irritated. They pull into the forest, and immediately are greeted by an angry local who tells them to turn around, and fuck off, back into town. This scene reminded me of a VERY similar one from The Last Exorcism, a little too much. Okay, I understand with the high amount of films out there these days, all movies are going to have alike scenes no matter what, but really, this seemed so similar that The Last Exorcism popped into my mind almost immediately. Maybe it was because they’re both found-footage flicks, but who knows.
Now, I am going to try to keep this review as spoiler-free as possible, but that might be hard. The rest of the film all really is just weird howling noises, rocks being thrown and what sounds like a dog barking. Bigfoot never materializes, well there is one scene where you maybe catch a slight glimpse of him. However, we apparently are just supposed to be scared by these noises that sound like a dog. They also try to spin the whole Blair Witch idea, with the couple walking around in circles in the woods when they try to go back to their car. I think that scene is meant to be a tension-building one, but it just failed miserably.
I also believe that there could have been so much more done to build the tension and the scares. Instead, within the first night of them in the woods, shit hits the fan. There was no time before, or after that, where the plot thickened more to make the movie more creepy. I felt like a big chunk of the movie was just missing.
Don’t even get me started on the end. My jaw dropped. Not in a “holy shit that’s a scary ending” kind of way, but in a “wow, that’s it?!?” kind of way. I was still waiting for the climax of the movie at this point.. only to find out that there really wasn’t one.
After seeing the high rating on Rotten Tomatoes, I was quite surprised that this movie would be so lacking. I seriously thought even myself, who knows nothing about film making, could have made a better film. I really think that the director had all the right tools, but just didn’t know how to use them. It really is a shame, because I’d love to see a scary, effective bigfoot film.
Oh well,.. I guess it just makes me all the more excited to check out the new film “Exists.”
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