Wednesday, March 19, 2008

THE COTTAGE - do you wanna buy some pegs, Dave?

THE COTTAGE wants to be a gore-filled black comedy in the manner of the wickedly funny, horrifically scary SEVERANCE. [ah! do you remember when Danny Dyer was value-for-money entertainment?!] It starts off well. Under-stated opening. Tense atmosphere. Andy "Gollum" Serkis, Reece 'Papa Lazarou' Shearsmith and Steve 'Spudgun' O'Donnell showing real comic timing and chemistry. Two bickering brothers and their half-wit friend have kidnapped the local pimp's step-daughter. In true RUTHLESS PEOPLE style, the kidnappee runs rings round the kidnappers and soon the conspirators and the victim are running around the British countryside in the middle of the night, being chased down by a crazed yokel. Jennifer Ellison - a British Z-list "star" of day-time TV - lowers the tone with her one-note angry Scouser routine, though it's hard to know if this is merely a fault of the script. The bigger problem is that the movie is never scary enough to be labelled a horror flick. And it's really funny never funny enough to get a belly-laugh. Sadly, after THE LEAGUE OF GENTLEMEN so successfully sent up the British obsession with sinister peasants, movies like THE BAKER and THE COTTAGE just seem old-hat. Which is all rather a shame, because Shearsmith, Serkis and Williams have all done really impressive work in the past.

THE COTTAGE is on release in the UK and opens in France on May 7th.

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