Tuesday, 18 July 2017

KILLING GROUND - Review By Greg Klymkiw - Psycho Aussie Inbreds at Fantasia 2017

As you can see, it's best to avoid Australia.

Killing Ground (2017)
Dir. Damien Power
Starring: Harriet Dyer, Ian Meadows, Aaron Pedersen, Aaron Glenane,
Maya Stange, Julian Garner, Tiarnie Coupland, Liam Parkes, Riley Parkes

Review By Greg Klymkiw

It's not an especially good idea to go camping in Australia. The Down Under hinterlands are full of slavering White Trash inbreds hell-bent upon raping wives, girlfriends and daughters in front of their menfolk and eventually, slaughtering the whole lot of them. It can't be any other way - at least not in the movies.

Killing Ground follows a young doctor (Ian Meadows) and his girlfriend (Harriet Dyer) on a long drive into the Oz wilderness for a happy, carefree vacation. They're madly in love, of course, and the pristine beauty of the natural world around them inspires a marriage proposal under the big, clear skies.

Things couldn't be better. Unfortunately, the lovebirds haven't seen enough cautionary Australian exploitation films in the grand tradition of Road Games, Wolf Creek, Primal, et al. Lurking just round the corner are a pair of avid wild pig hunters (Aaron Pedersen, Aaron Glenane) who have a little more on their relatively feeble minds than bagging some snuffling porcine delights. These fellas need to do a little porcine snuffling themselves.

When our couple happen upon a lovely spot, they notice a tent nearby. Nobody appears to be inhabiting it, even though there appear to have been signs of recent life. Oh well, those folks must be enjoying a nature trail. Well, they tried to enjoy a nature trail. Writer-Director Damien Power's screenplay affords us a glimpse into what happened to a hapless hubby and wife (Maya Stange, Julian Garner), their pretty teenage daughter (Tiarnie Coupland) and infant son (played by identical twins Liam and Riley Parkes).

And what happened ain't pretty.

The film affords us a glimpse into the family's encounter with the aforementioned psychos and whilst we enjoy the couple's idyll, we know it won't last long.

Killing Ground is a creepy, terrifying tale of survival that takes us into Deliverance territory. Making his feature film debut, Power parcels out the suspense with the skill and aplomb of a master and though his screenplay offers little beyond its derivative mechanics, he peppers it with more than enough twists and turns of the fresh variety whilst adding a structure that skilfully plays with timelines to keep us riveted.

And once again, we get another good reason to avoid vacationing in Australia.


Killing Ground enjoys its Canadian Premiere at Fantasia 2017