Others have already remarked on the comparisons to The Wicker Man & Pet Sematary, which cast a long shadow of influence over the film. While the theme of bereavement is suitably affecting & served well by the performances of Gillen & Birthistle, the script is underdeveloped, never finding a consistent tone. Folk horror soon gives way to slasher movie clichés, none of which evoke much in the way of terror or suspense.
An interesting Monkey's Paw tale that never quite pulls it together. The slapdash resolution negates the the tension built in the first quarter of the movie. WAKE WOOD attempts to recall the classic British horror of Hammer or Amicus but can never quite grab that ring. Too bad.
The way this is shot gives off the odd effect of the re-enactment sections of true crime investigation tv shows, the overly bright flashback sequences of the daughter being the most obvious example. The whole thing overall just doesn’t work very well, the plot not being able to be taken seriously and the horror and emotions being ineffective. Very TV movie feel.
Sort of a cross between "The Wicker Man" and "Pet Sematary", this is less an in-your-face horror than an emotional piece. It does get a bit cheesy along the way, plot-wise, but it does provide an unusually realistic atmosphere that somehow allow it to overcome its genre-related shortcomings
i had high hopes (loving Don't Look Now and The Wicker Man and olde Hammer Horrors) but am struggling to justify even two stars. it earns them for 1) the crazy birthing sequence involving a spinal chord, placenta and flaming mud, and 2) the gentle but frenetic editing of the sex scene. so there's that.