Reviewed by: Andre Manseau
What's it about
Three old pals reunite after some time apart. Unfortunately for them, they chose the wrong neck of the woods to go camping, as they soon run into an evil, cannibalistic mountain family who are hungry for one thing- and it ain't chicken.
Is it good movie?
Ok, I need to get something off my chest, before I begin my review.
I don't like movies that are gory, simply for the sake of being gory. whether they're ultraviolent or not.
Keeping that in mind, I'd like to tell you what the filmmakers of Barricade must have had in mind.
I think the filmmakers wanted to redefine the notion of gory violence.
This movie IS gore. That's what it is.
To be fair, there is indeed some relationship-building going on in this flick. As we find out throughout the film, the main characters are linked through a strong bond of friendship. This plot device is revealed via several flashback-stype scenes throughout the film, mostly in the first half. There's even a bit of development with the various evil-cliché-family members as the film moves along.
So, the characters are relatively well written, what else is there? Oh, yeah, the gore. Within the first few minutes of the film, you're treated to a whole lot of flesh ripping; the gore is piled on by the bucketful. The directing is sharp, with a whole bunch of inventive shots that really go along with the film's nasty nature.
I know that you've read "Gorier than Hostel" and "Nastier than Saw" before, but let me tell you now, without hesitation: Barricade is one of the nastiest, most brutal films I’ve seen in a long time. It's gorier than Hostel and Saw combined. I believe it has a goal to disgust anyone who watches it, and it certainly will succeed with even the most die-hard horror fan. If this bad boy doesn't make you turn away at all, I'd be surprised.
The plot is built up rather well with an initial rising incident occurring at the beginning of the film, thus leading to things coming to a slow (and visceral) boil as the film picks up the pace. Don't get me wrong- Barricade. is certainly not a psychological thriller, but more of a throwback to 1970s exploitation films. It isn't pleasant.
To be honest, I wasn't truly thrilled with Barricade. Although I've read otherwise, I thought the acting was marginal at best. Even though the filmmakers tried to enhance the relationship between the film's main characters, I wanted them to die. I thought their dialogue was awful (and to be honest, this could be due to poor English translation from the movie's original German language), and was rooting for the bad guys all the way. Not to mention that the final "big moment" was a little predictable and fell flat.
Barricade is made to terrify the average, mainstream, PG-13 "horror" fan, and please the hardcore audience; the average person might not like it, but it has a fan base, and that fan base will likely love it.
Video / Audio
Video is presented in 1 85:1 widescreen , and looks clean, although the picture quality isn't much to write home about to begin with.
Audio seems to be in 5.1, and was pretty front heavy, but otherwise the mix is fine.
The first special feature is called Behind the Barricade (listed as a documentary), and is basically a 10 minute music montage of various shots being filmed, behind the scenes. I don't really like stuff like this, I find it to be mostly boring due to lack of any real commentary. If you're a film student, you'd probably like this slightly more technical aspect of how a film is made.
I Survived Barricade is a short, 10 minute feature with various crew members. It is essentially a bunch of interview questions all spliced together. Fairly tame stuff, with questions like 'Is this your first horror movie?' and so on. Good enough, but you'd only ever watch it once.
Also on the disc is a commentary, which is chock full of neat information, and spoken by actors in English, so it’s easy to understand.
There's also a trailer, and an animated slideshow of all your favorite nasty shots.
You may dispute my claims of lousy acting, but one thing you'll surely agree with is that Barricade brings the red, and spreads it all over town. If you're a gore hound, you absolutely must track this down and purchase it. Honestly, I’m a bit surprised it will even see the light of day in North America! What are you waiting for, bloodhounds? Jump over this Barricade today!