3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Disturbing, but Overall a Good Movie.,
This review is from: Hidden in the Woods [DVD]  [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC] (DVD)
This was a very interesting exploitation/horror gore film from Chile, I wouldn't exactly recommend this film for those who have a weak stomach as it was quite disturbing. South American horror has been hitting the headlines with increasing frequency of late, with the likes of the Uruguayan “Silent House” having received international releases, not to mention Hollywood remakes. The Chilean “Hidden in the Woods”, directed by Patricio Valladares, is a very different proposition indeed, being a full-blown, utterly amoral exploitation gore thriller that is likely to offend and dismay viewers of all tastes.
Apparently based on a true story, the film charts the fortunes of Ana and Anny (Siboney Lo and Carolina Escobar), two young sisters raised in the forest by their abusive drug dealer father (Daniel Antivilo), who regularly beats and sexually assaults them. When he is arrested after killing a couple of investigating police with a chainsaw, the sisters are forced to fend for themselves, taking care of Anny’s handicapped, animalistic son, who has spent most of his life locked in the shed. When drug lord Costello hears about the drug dealer's arrest he sends some men looking for his missing drugs, and basically all hell breaks loose. the film does deliver as an all-out grindhouse experience. Whilst it does pack in a lot of rape, sexual abuse, cannibalism and violence, the film never glorifies anything and the camera certainly seems to treat the mistreatment of its male and female characters with equally gleeful abandon.
Indeed, the film is so over the top that it does become hard to accept at face value, Valladares having produced a nightmarish picture of an ultra-violent world where everyone is a murderer, rapist or deviant of some description, and it does at times feel like a devilish cartoon. In odd contrast to that is this movie is visually quite striking. It’s well-shot, a great deal of handheld camera work emphasizing the chaotic happenings on screen, and it truly captures the grit and squalor of the area in which it is set. Those technical accomplishments do not counteract the fact that this is an incredibly nasty, harrowing and affecting movie.