There are a seemingly infinite number of slasher movies out there that is teeming with the same story line, the same characters, and the same predictable ending. Nevertheless, no matter how many times we yawn in revolt against the backlash of bored, tired, and “cookie cutter” thrillers. We know the stories and we know the rhymes and, frankly, we’re sick of them.
Only a handful of slasher movies can bend the narrative in an original and exciting way. Lake Bodom, sadly, is not that film. The movie revolves around the notorious place where four teenagers were murded Value in 1960 and the killer still runs rampant. Flash forward decades later and two creepy assed kids rope on two girls to go explore the area and recreate the past events in hopes to lure out the original killer. As is with any horror film where victims lay ripe for the killer, when the night strikes, the group of four find themselves perilous to an unknown assailant, can they survive?
Yes, I know exactly what you are thinking and you are totally right, this is exactly like everything you’ve seen before. The movie is garishly similar to every teen slasher romp you’ve ever seen. Except it has like one twist in it which you completely enjoy for ten seconds until you realise it’s descending into a mash of stereotypes (spoiler alert: obsessive lesbian killers are overdone and hella damaging, you.) What’s more is that there is literally a moment where you think it’s going to go into Cabin in the Woods territory but it veneers back into the same plodding tale of hapless girls romping around the forest in almost their knackers.
What’s worse is that there is always an exploitative nature when you include real life cases. Where more adept filmmakers can assemble a sensitive approach to the victims in a more observant and exploratory way, Lake Bodo mainly uses the previous killings as atmosphere which is horrifically disrespectful to the original victims. Even the whole “we want to find out who the killer really is” pokes the history and doesn’t even make a solid conclusion. Trench coat wearing spook? Yes. It’s been done before and in real life.
Sadly, Lake Bodom just doesn’t master any ingenuity or care for its subject matter.
I’ve kept this somewhat brief as the film, Lake Bodom is a disappointing tale that had a lot of promise. If it steeper away from the actual murders, if it followed the great path it was racing down in the middle, if it didn’t use stereotypes in a yawn inducing way to flesh out the characters, then the film would be great.
But it disappointingly does all these things and its a real bore.
Lake Bodom played as part of the BFI London Film Festival.