Spoilers follow ...
- The Lodge review by NP
Michael (Owen Szabo) and Julia (Elizabeth Kell) travel to the Rocky Mountains in order to spend a romantic few days alone together. A likeable duo, their never-ending foreplay is nevertheless nauseating, and yet this is how directors Brad Helmink and John Rauschelbach feel they need to convey their feelings for each other.
They meet proprietor Henry (Kevin McClatchy) amidst a carnage of general untidiness when they arrive. No hint of an apology forthcoming, Henry proves to be … a bit of a twit, really. Ignorant and arrogant yet formidable, he refers to the couples as ‘kids’, so it makes no sense when Michael subsequently tries to ‘bond’ with him by reminiscing about past sporting achievements and telling him how passionate a lover Julia is. As such, much of the couple’s time together now becomes an awkward three-way thing.
The well-being of the twosome isn’t helped by the discovery of a dishevelled young girl Desi (Mandi Kreisher), seemingly kept prisoner in a locked room of the lodge. Why she hasn’t made her presence known before now is made clear when her relationship with Henry – not his real name, by the way – is revealed.
‘The Lodge’ is ultimately a well-made, nicely directed, convincingly acted horror thriller. There’s a good slow build-up of menace aided immeasurably by the superbly hypnotic score by Yagmur Kaplan. Not the most original or ground-breaking story you’ll ever know, but it makes no claims to be – although the DVD cover’s proclamation ‘The Shining meets Cabin in the Woods’ is guilty of overselling its effectiveness.
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