Isle of Dogs Movie Review at FrightFest 2010 Day 2

Isle of Dogs Movie Review at FrightFest 2010 Day 2

It’s five pm on Friday and Day 2 of FrightFest 2010 begins in earnest with the first new film of the day called Isle of Dogs.

I always look for keywords in the programme guide to get a clue into whether I’m going to like what I watch.

Lo and behold I get the mother of all clues in the sentence for Isle of Dogs:

“…[Isle of Dogs] is an unflinching exploration at what people will do to survive…”

The keyword there?


Unflinching is a horror euphemism for ‘pulling out fingernails slowly and painfully in massive close ups’.

It can also be a euphemism for over the top gore drowning out story, and a nonsensical plot created for the purpose of having a peg to hang graphic violence on.

Reading the programme guide, I could have skipped Isle of Dogs, but it’s a Brit flick and I could have been wrong drawing overly specific conclusions based on one word.

I could have been wrong.

But I wasn’t.

Isle of Dogs did indeed live up to my prejudices.

What’s more, the film annoyingly scored un-dramatic scenes with music of dread. For example, one scene had a woman blow drying her hair, accompanied by an ethereal “duuuuuurrrrrrm” musical score.

Did I just miss something here? Was the hair dryer sabotaged? Were split ends that much of a threat? The weather outside did look a bit cloudy. Maybe the onset of rain was the real villain?

Note: if you know all you’re filming are pretty pictures with no story value, underscore the film continuously with ethereal music to make it appear to have gravitas.

The film’s main problem is typified in its opening scene: an overly long staged execution of some lacky in a crime syndicate by his boss, which we’ve seen in 100 films before, is done without any wit or depth.  And yet, you get the idea that the producers may have thought this scene would have gripped the audience by the balls.

The violence in the film is inflated for effect and grows more desperate with each passing scene. Rather than heighten any shock value, the violence in the film simply starts delivering diminishing returns.

The only redeeming features of the film are a cool opening credits sequence, loud blaring and colourful; solid performances by all the lead actors in the role, who given a better script could have made this something special.

posted by admin at 2:20 am  

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  1. […] Day 2 FrightFest 2010 Day 1 Picture Gallery Tobe Hooper Retrospective FrightFest 2010 Day 2 Isle of Dogs Movie Review at FrightFest 2010 Day 2 F Movie Review at FrightFest 2010 Day 2 F Movie Review at FrightFest 2010 Day 2 FrightFest 2010 Day […]

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