This is a well made, small budget flick from New Zealand and it has a setting that is becoming a new sub genre, that is the Nazi's and the occult. It starts the day before D-Day, when two New Zealand commandos have been sent to the Channel Islands as part of Operation Overlord and the subterfuge that was employed by the Allies. They are to blow up gun emplacements in a bid to make the Germans think that the Islands will be the staging post for the invasion of Europe. So far, so plausible, as they near their target they can hear tortured screams coming from the bowels of the cavernous outpost. Captain Ben Grogen (Craig Hall) decides it might be one of their men being tortured and so goes in against the advice of his Sargeant.
In some horrors you always want to know why do the `heroes' go into the big scary mansion where the lights don't work, instead of running as quickly as possible in the opposite direction. What director Paul Campion makes you realise is that it is foolish but heck you would probably do the same thing, so cliché avoided. A word about Mr Campion, he has worked as artist and painter on oodles of films including `The lord of the rings' trilogy but I think this is his first in the directors chair.
Well they go into the pit and to tell you any more would be a plot spoiler.
What I can say is that they do not find any of their comrades and most of the Germans are already dead, so what they do find is a whole lot worse. The German commander is Col Klaus Meyer (Mathew Sunderland) who is a member of the SS on one of Hitler's special missions to investigate the legendary witchcraft of the Islands. His role is pivotal to the plot development and as some have commented he does have a rather English accent, which is forgivable as a lot of Germans were educated in England, but it is really because he is not actually a German actor. This is full of unpleasant gore, scares a plenty and images of the occult as well as more blood than an average abattoir. It is tense and gripping right from the start and does not let up throughout, which is a very big achievement especially as this is 96 minutes long.
I am not a huge horror fan, but this is one that has appeal on many levels, if you liked `The Outpost', or `The Keep' you will want to see this. Scary, claustrophobic, dirty and intense, I think Mr Campion should be rightly proud of what he has managed to achieve.