Horror in the Forest (2023) Film Review


Horror in the woods

It’s a very good idea Horror in the woods. Yes, I love found footage movies and will feel ready to watch them because I find them scary and I love a good scare. So while I fell into found footage format, Horror in the woods it’s a good time to look at what’s right and what’s wrong with how the format is used today.

The very simple premise and what some would consider a “monotonous execution” has something interesting behind it. It’s a horror movie that looks like any other movie you’ve probably seen before. It follows every rule in the book and even rips off a major scene from its undeniable inspiration. That doesn’t mean it’s a bad movie. We can’t accuse it of duplicating content, because that’s what we should do with most Hollywood movies. What I found interesting about it is what you can actually find beyond the first glance. At the core of his premise is a commentary on trauma that works.

The location of the movie is similar to other found movies. The filmmakers decide to shoot a documentary about something in the woods. The so-called Curse of Rudwick Forest is responsible for the disappearance of people. After the cold opening, it’s quite clear that something personal is lurking in the woods. Our crew is meticulously questioning the people involved in the disappearances. From the family to the people responsible for taking care of the place. In the end, they have to face something that is not of this world.

Can I tell you? Well, you better see for yourself. All I’m saying is that the entity is pretty evil.

Directed Brendan Rudnickibehind the guy The Forest of Death, this is completely generic even with its title. Rudnicki takes found footage and makes the best of it for a delicious horror film that’s about things other than the average horror tropes of the subgenre. Sure, there are jump scares, but Rudnicki also gives screen time to the dynamics that work between the main characters and adds dramatic weight to the mystery of the father who is behaving strangely in relation to the forest. At this point, any other film would have deemed it unnecessary to traumatize the equation. In this case, I just thought it provided enough strength for the film to flow naturally to the end.

Some disturbing images and the lack of exaggerations Horror in the woods counterpoint to the “found footage is dead” debates. As we’ve seen in the past with other independent productions, and especially genre films, the director must be able to recognize the limitations of a production. Instead of opting for cheesy digital effects and pointless cheap scares, Rudnicki stays on a more sane path, which is a good step in building the films universe. Yes, it is impossible not to consider his last films as something bigger, from which to grow, learn and make better films in the future.

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Federico Furzan

Founder of Screentology. Member of OFCS. RT rated critic
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