Wednesday, 12 February 2014

13 Hrs (3½ Stars)

This was pretty much a blind purchase. All I knew about it is that it was a British horror film. It was also on special offer, the cheapest Blu-ray I had ever seen. At £1.30 it cost me less than a DVD rental, so why not buy it? If I didn't like it I could throw it away.

The film begins with Sarah, in her mid 20's at a guess, coming home to spend her vacation with her family in England after living in America for a few years. Her parents live in a beautiful farmhouse in Surrey, miles from the nearest village. On arriving she finds out that her parents are in debt, and the electricity has already been cut off. Her mother has gone out, presumably to meet a secret lover. Her three brothers are having a party in the barn with her previous best friend and another boy. After a short while they return to the house to look for food, but they find Sarah's father dead, his body ripped to pieces. Some sort of monster is in the house, killing them one by one.

It's a passable film, worth the price I paid for it. I doubt I'll watch it again. Considering that it's a relatively short film, only 80 minutes long, it takes a long time to get started. The first 20 minutes are spent with the family arguing with one another, making me wonder if the film would ever turn into a horror. It was never explained why the film is called "13 Hrs". Maybe that's how long the night lasts at that time of year? In America the film has been released as "Night Wolf", which would make more sense. Except that the "wolf" in this film has no hair.

One small matter. Some people complain about gratuitous nudity in films. I have no problems with nudity as long as it makes sense within the context of the story. What bothers me about this film is that in one of the final scenes Sarah wakes up naked and then covers herself before standing up, even though she knows she's alone in the house. That makes no sense. It's gratuitous clothedness.

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