13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
A cut above,
This review is from: Eden Lake [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
A nice, decent couple go away for the weekend in what they expect to be a quiet secluded part of the woods beside a lake and end up aggravated, hounded and tortured by a group of Asbochav kids.
I read several of the reviews here before watching this which collectively kind of hyped it up such that I was expecting something rather special. It's pretty good, yes, but I didn't find it quite as disturbing or as shocking as others have done. Where it stands out, I feel, is in its sense of reality - for the most part all the characters and their actions, together with the script, were convincing and authentic. That's an unusual compliment to pay what is ostensibly a horror film, but I guess some effort was made to incorporate some of the social issues that blight our nation these days and as a result it rarely felt over-the-top or gratuitous. It was a little bit disturbing, I admit, because it leaves you with the sense that it could actually happen, and the acting was spot-on given the various scenarios.
One or two of the incidents that took place during the most violent stages had me flinching, curling my toes or releasing an expletive despite watching it alone. Yet I would suggest once again that not many of the gruesome parts were there purely for shock value, which made it all the more watchable and worthy of being taken seriously. There were no comic-horror moments at any time, nothing to make you chuckle. I thought Kelly Reilly in the leading role was excellent from start to finish, displaying great versatility between schoolteacher, lover and finally a woman hell-bent on furious retribution. Overall the kudos go to the director James Watkins who also wrote the screenplay. It's a well put together short story with a sinister undertone, that being the thought that most of what happens in the film isn't too far from reality.
I watched this in full 1080p Blu-Ray but as is often the case, I forgot about that within a minute or two. I haven't seen the SD version but the high-def option didn't blow me away with its wondrous picture quality, it just seemed like a normal DVD.
Extras include interviews with the director and the producer, both lead actors and Thomas Turgoose (who plays the thug Cooper), a 'behind the scenes' feature, a Q&A session with the director, TV spots and trailers. As far as I know there were no foreign language options of any kind, just the facility to have subtitles in English.
In summary: a scary and occasionally disturbing film that is probably a cut above the majority within its genre. Worth seeing.