Directed by DAVID BLYTH
Review by MARTIN BOUCHER
Released by Breaking Glass Pictures
Running Time: 77 minutes
Color format: Color
Audio/Subtitles: English Dolby Digital 2.0 /No Subtitles
Region Code: 1, NTSC
Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1 (4/3)
16:9 Enhanced: Yes
Special Features: “Knot Nine”(end title song); “Damn Laser Vampires” (three songs – horror themes); “Circadian Rhythms” (director David Blyth’s first short film from 1976)
Trailer Online: Yes
New Zealand’s WOUND is one strange film. Kate O’Rourke (30 DAYS OF NIGHT) plays a nut job whose life may or may not be real. What she goes through in the space of 77 minutes is so beyond weird that anyone with a sane mind will have a hard time connecting the dots in the plot. Which brings the following question. Is there a plot? Well, yes, but talking about it will be one heck of a job. So here it goes.
Susan, a loner who works at home as a telephone sales representative, seems to have the weight of the world on her shoulders. She’s a survival of incest, is used and abused by everyone, is filmed 24/7 à la PARANORMAL ACTIVITY, is into S&M, and collects her excrements in tinfoil (don’t ask). One day, her grown-up, long lost daughter shows up at her doorstep. Trouble is, Susan never had a child. Or did she? What ensues is a series of messed up imageries where a masturbating man in a pig-mask, a perhaps back from the grave visitor, a male bondage expert, and a mother from hell all co-star.
Writer director David Blyth (RED-BLOODED AMERICAN I and II) tries hard to impress with scenes of the psychedelic kind but, in doing so, forgets to apply the “less is more” motto and ends up shooting himself in the foot. Indeed, everything in WOUND is overly done, from the in your-face gore to the zany goings on of the mother/daughter team to the TWILIGHT ZONE-like climax. So much so, in fact, that viewers are left feeling overstuffed when the credits finally roll. Channeling director greats such as Lynch or Cronenberg is fine with us, but a little tamer in delivery goes a long way.
Of course, WOUND isn’t all black-and-blue. Take the performance of its lead star, for example. O’Rourke embodies the role of a lost soul with such fervor that it’s always a joy to watch her in action. Expect a lot more from this woman, especially in horror films, if she plays her cards right. As for the camera work, though Blyth’s many colorful sequences are hard to keep up with, they’re always interesting and impeccably shot. It would be fun to see a more conventional piece from this fellow one of these days. Lastly, if you’re a big fan of gruesome FX, then you’ve come to the right flick, for, as mentioned, WOUND has a few up its sleeves. On the technical side, the picture and sound quality for this film is A-okay with everything crisp and smooth-looking. The extra features aforementioned on the sidebar are nonexistent due to the DVD screener copy status.