Wednesday, January 22, 2014

A review of "Black Forest"

Confessions of a Film Junkie: A review of “Black Forrest”

By: Brian Cotnoir

     Oh SyFy, you have the best of intentions what it comes to releasing TV movies; you really do.  Some of your films even show signs of great potential, but somehow or another they always end up falling flat—usually due to television censorship and/or budget restraints—and what once stood to be a good Horror film, ended up a disappointing film.  Let’s look at one of your more recent TV movies, 2012’s “Black Forest”.                    
So our story opens at a bar in Germany, not too far from where the Grimm Brother’s wrote their famous fairytales.  An Irish tour guide is telling an old fairytale to an Oncologist named Saxon—who coincidentally is also from Ireland—and then tells him that if he is interested he include him in tour group he is taking tomorrow to visit some of the sites that inspired the Grimm Fairytales.  Saxon accepts the Tour Guides offer and goes off on the tour along with a banker, his wife, their newborn daughter, their babysitter, and two college students studying Astronomy.  Their tour guide takes them to a hill where the “Fairy folk” are said to gather.  A beautiful fairy seems to appear out of nowhere and snatches the baby right out of its mother’s arms. The people try to chase after the fairy, but cannot catch her.  The two college students later deduce that they are no longer in Germany, but rather another world.  A world where everything is modeled after a fairytale and they must use their knowledge of fairytale’s in order to survive and hopefully escape.              
I dont like the look of it!
I have to say that this film has some pretty awesome visuals.  Throughout the film there are these really cool looking animation stills, and the CGI is actually decent as well.  It’s no secret to anyone that SyFy doesn’t usually have the best special effects, but I must say I was quite impressed with the CGI fairies and even some of the wolves as well.  I also like how each character is tied together to a specific fairytale. Saxon is the Huntsman, the bankers wife is Sleeping Beauty, the babysitter is Snow White (who get’s eaten by the Seven Dwarves and, no not eaten in the perverted gang-bang way, the dwarves actually cannibalize her).                          
So if it’s not the visuals or the story that keeps this film from being good it must be the acting.  Yeah, the acting in this film ranges meek and uninteresting to comedic and over the top.  I cannot think of one memorable or good performance from “Black Forest”.  As I said before, SyFy has a huge disadvantage of being a television network and not an actually film studio, so since their films are shown on cable TV they have to adhere to the guidelines and regulations of the FCC, so their films cant include things like swearing, excessive violence, and nudity.  It really was these restrictions that kept this film back.  Plus, I’m just going to come out and say that I thought the ending was really weak.                      

     As far as TV movies go, “Black Forest” is okay.  It’s not fantastic, but it’s certainly not bad.  If you’re a fan of the recent fairytale modernizations, then I think you will like “Black Forest” other than that, I wouldn’t hold to high of an expectation for it.

1 comment:

  1. So does that mean you weren't mesmerized by tremors and that movie with the cgi tiger that was about as realistic as the fox in 'what does the fox say'? I for one am shocked!