Feb 18, 2009

Dying Breed

A common tactic in provoking irrational fear; take a true story and apply a "What if" element to the story in order to blindly steer the script direction in which ever way gravity prefers. We've seen Open Water, The Host, From Hell (and the graphic novel), Wolf Creek, and many others that barely open up the possibilities of pseudo-historical horror. Taking both the legends of the Tasmanian Tiger and Alexander "The Pieman" Pearce - an infamous cannibal, Dying Breed "interweaves" both tales into one fact-faction survival film that rings bells true although reminding you of every other camping terror film.

This Horrorfest addition has garnered some publicity for its less-than-sanitary poster display that was banned in Australia for displaying a delicious meal cracked open to contain some organic ingredients. In general, Dying Breed has a fantastic marketing campaign but the film just wastes it all away taking in the bland script, characters, and events glazed over by a mesmerizing forest setting. And of course, the addition of an anti-GeoConservative friend to the trip was necessary. Jack (Nathan Phillips) kills animals, fucks everywhere, slashes tires, and befouls the hospitality of his captors. If he hadn't been on the trip, their situation wouldn't be rectified but their redemption might have been merciful.

Taking an interesting theme of forced impregnation as seen and popularized in Pink Flamingos, Dying Breed invokes the aid of a town birthed entirely on hostages put in the same situation as the stars of this show. Female backpackers looking for the enigmatic Tasmanian Tiger are chained down and raped repeatedly giving Dying Breed a grotesquely erotic edge that will collect with the final product and make the final scene very visceral and bleak. The Pieman is regarded within the film as a slasher villain thanks to the camera tactics of scarcely revealing his underlying motives, while at the same time, glamorizing his ruggedness. His stalking sequences and such are less than horrifying and even invokes questions such as "Uhhh......" and "Errrrr......" I mean, honestly, how old is this guy? I doubt a diet of horny college girls instills the gift of eternal, inbred life.

Dying Breed follows Nina, an Irish zoologist who's on the trail of a Tasmanian Tiger and her sister, who disappeared 8 years before in the very same territory; not before sending a paw print of the Tiger though. Her boyfriend, Leigh Whannell, has organized the trip for her and he remains the saving grace through the film being both rational and sympathetic. Dying Breed is yet another boring exploit of a film depicting a male, innocent and solemn, going out of his way to please a female, only to get ravaged, beaten, and shit on by the end of the credits; meanwhile - glorifying the female as the hero (rather, heroine).

Dying Breed will never receive glowing reviews but from a fan expressing extreme appreciation for a legless nude female strung over a tree. It's these seldom gory and ridiculous moments that even qualify Dying Breed for a watch. I will wholeheartedly admit though, those scenes where you caught a slight and tiny glimpse of the elusive Tiger, these sent shivers down my spine and brims my mind with hope for a decaying species line. As for the Horrorfest line, as a collective, reformation is a must. Hopelessness aside, these high-grade low-quality films are the real dying breed to shower concern over, or rather, lack thereof.


1 comment:

Keith said...

I might have to check this one out.