If you want a nasty and captivating horror movie to blow you away, just play Wolf Creek. Already a classic, it’s based on several true crimes that happened in the Australian outback. It bears the most resemblance to the horrific serial killer Ivan Milat, who terrorized the land down under in the nineties. Like this fucking movie needed to be any more intense or realistic. I mean, I was already freaking out without knowing that all of this might have happened for real.
Wolf Creek is a one-man show and that man’s name is John Jarratt. His performance here was simply stellar and his character of Mick Taylor is now a part of horror movie history. John is a method actor and he spent weeks alone in the outback, preparing for the role. We will be following three backpackers, enjoying their time in the Australian outback. That is until they ran into a man who seemed eager to help. The first part of the movie has this rather cheerful and uplifting atmosphere. The character development was excellent making what followed even more disturbing.
Directed by Greg McLean (Rogue), Wolf Creek is an intense movie with a lot of violence and difficult scenes. People actually walked out of the theaters, unable to complete the movie. As someone who watched a lot of fucked up horror movies, I have to admit that this one was quite difficult. I mean, I did finish it and everything but I needed something to calm me down afterward. The thing that kept fucking me up was not only the severity of the situation and the plot but its undeniable realness.
Liz and Kristy are enjoying everything that Australia has to offer along with their friend Ben. Being Australian himself, Ben knows all the cool spots and he’s too eager to help two young and beautiful Brits with their plans. Their next stop is Wolf Creek crater but first, they have to stop at the local gas station. This is where they run into a group of rude slackers who give them a hard time. However, all of this is nothing to what’s going to happen to them next.
I would compare Wolf Creek to a string of effective horror movies that came out around that time. I’m talking about movies like Eden Lake, Martyrs, and Ils. All of them had this authentic visual style and plots that were convincing. Just think of movies we got in the early aughts and their plots. I think that the best example is Wrong Turn. And while people do not act rationally in these movies, here they’re trying to do what would you or me do in that type of a situation.
In turn, making it feel even more fucked up. And our killer is not some omnipotent being evading the police at every turn. He’s just a sadistic little fuck taking advantage of the remoteness of his surroundings. And while I praised Jarratt’s performance I would be remiss if I didn’t mention Kestie Morassi and Cassandra Magrath. Talented and frighteningly committed, there’s a bright future ahead of both of them. Actually, during one of these scenes, Morassi was so convincing that director Greg Mclean burst stopped shooting and tried to stop everything to the amazement of both Morassi and Jarrat.
The setting in Wolf Creek is also very effective. And while during those carefree opening minutes we’ll enjoy beautiful and wild Australian landscapes, as time goes on, they will turn into remote and soulless places. Places where if you died, no one would ever find you. Finally, I do want to add that I do not consider Wolf Creek to be one of the torture porn horror movies. It’s just too intelligent for that.