A murderous clan of cannibalistic savages descends upon an unwitting family stranded in the desert.
Wes Craven’s sophomore feature proves less disturbing than The Last House on the Left due in part to the family’s hubris and myopic focus. Their cavalcade of poor decisions almost leaves you rooting for the savages.
And savage may be too harsh a term. The group operates with radio comms, decoy explosions, and timed raids. Paramilitary might prove more apt.
Lest you think Craven has lost all his edge, I appreciated the film’s willingness to imperil a baby. The savages—er, paramilitary hill people—refer to it as a “young thanksgiving turkey”. Good stuff.
The new 4k master looks terrific, but the HDR color grading felt off in a few third act scenes. The saturated blue sky lent more than one shot a soundstage appearance. A minor quibble with the film’s best presentation to date.
- Arrow, 2021↩