Hells Ground review by The Grim Ringler


Ok, I can honestly tell you, in all seriousness that I never, ever, ever expected to be reviewing a Pakastani homage to THE EVIL DEAD and THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE. What a crazy world we live in. Seriously. This is it though, a horror film from Pakistan that is played straight and for chills, well, and perhaps a couple laughs. A group of young people get together for a road trip into the country to get a strange delicacy from a roadside stand. The trip will take them across the border into a foreign land and deep into a wooded and isolated area. What the young people don’t know though is that the water in this poor area has been tainted with something toxic and which has been infecting the locals so that they slowly become zombies. The kids (and I call them this because I am tired of saying ‘young people’ darn it!) get their goods and one of them immediately dives into it which, little does he know, was made with the tainted water. Almost immediately the friend begins to show signs that he isn’t well but before his friends can get too worried a mysterious hitchhiker hails the van. Against their better judgment they decide to give the man a ride and soon regret it when, incensed that the young people don’t have any water to give him, curses them and pulls a knife out in order to exact his vengeance on them. They manage to get him out of the van and end up driving the van into him as they escape. Their escape doesn’t last long though as the local villagers, now zombies, begin to surge from the woods towards them at every turn. As night falls the kids end up lost in the woods and the worst is yet to come for in the woods there is slaughterhouse where a mad person does their killing and beyond that an isolated cabin that may be a safe haven or may prove the most dangerous place of all. This may be one trip that no one can return from. I have to admit to being very, very surprised by how good this film was. The acting was decent, the film is well directed, and it has a ton of style and atmosphere. I was also surprised at how bloody the film was, which was interesting considering that there is more implied than explicit violence. I couldn’t tell if the reason the camera didn’t focus on violent acts was due to the director’s personal choices or if there was just less cultural acceptance for that in Pakistan – heck, I can’t know everything. The film itself is a slight little thing, clocking in at just less than eighty minutes but it’s interesting all the way and, while logic may not always win out, you’ll not likely see many Pakastani zombie movies my friend. For serious. The big flaw with the film is that it plays SO much on the homages that there is little here that is original. This fact doesn’t hurt the film all that much but it does hold it back. The film looks good on DVD, though the image and sound won’t be what we’re used to with Western films. The extras are pretty nice as well featuring a making of documentary, commentary, and footage from the premiere. It’s nice to see such a small, little known film, get so much love. While not at all a great film, this is definitely a fun movie that shows a lot of promise for the director. It doesn’t hurt that it’s always nice to see a well done horror film that is from anywhere but America, Italy, Asia, or Spain. Seriously, rest of the world, get with it. Well worth a look. …c…

3 out of 10 Jackasses
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