For the last twenty years Frank Harrington (Ray Wise) has made the reluctant roadtrip with his family to celebrate Christmas at his mother in law's! This year all the usual in-car fighting and bickering ensues, but when the family finally fall asleep, Frank decides to take the short cut through the forest... it's the biggest mistake of his life! From out of the woods appears a mysterious woman, all in white, clutching a baby and leaving a trail of death in her wake. A terrifying black car - with no visible driver - carries her victims into the dark of night. Every road sign points to a destination they never reach as they are stuck on a never-ending road. Before too long panic and insanity set in and deeply buried secrets soon surface as Christmas turns into a living nightmare!
A skilfully made horror thriller.
- Dead End review by Shatner's Bassoon
(1) of (3) members found this review helpful.
You rated this film: 4
The plot of 'Dead End' revolves around the Harrington family, who on Christmas Eve are making their annual journey to Grandma's house for a Christmas family reunion. After deciding to take a short cut on a deserted forest road the father of the family dozes off at the wheel and narrowly escapes a head on collision with another vehicle. Continuing on with their journey the family soon realise they are lost on a seemingly endless road, and the only road sign points to a town which doesn't even appear on their map. Soon after the father notices a distressed looking woman holding a baby on the edge of the forest, he stops the car they decide to help her, and then their nightmare begins. From this point you're expecting an average psychotic killer loose in the forest kind of film, but to its credit 'Dead End' has something much better, a clever plot. Dead End smartly uses the 'less is more' school of filmmaking to great effect. There is very little gore, you never see anyone killed and there are absolutely no unnecessary scenes that deviate from the story; instead the film cleverly relies on its strong characters, all the while constructing a framework of anxiety and tension, leaving the actual horror to the viewers imagination. Personally, the only thing that slightly let this film down was the character of Richard played by Mick Cain, casting an actor clearly in his mid twenties to play an immature teenager spoilt an otherwise great cast. Overall, 'Dead End' is without doubt one of the most inventive, gripping and enjoyable horror films of late. The film has a dark and creepy feel throughout, the dialogue is sharp and witty, and the creative direction sustains the suspense throughout. If you are looking for a gore filled full on horror then 'Dead End' isn't it, but if you're looking for a psychological thriller that will not only hold your interest, but will keep you on the edge of your seat, then this is one of the best films you'll see in a long time.