Deathwatch

  • Film
  • Horror films
The haunted house structure - unseen forces and trapped folk picked off in baroque ways - is transposed to a trench on the Western Front. This adds new ingredients to the mix, self-satisfied rats and rank mud. Moreover, when the bedraggled band of British soldiers (including Bell, Rhys and Serkis) stumbles upon it, the trench is full of mangled bodies which they take to be the remains of German soldiers. This scene highlights a problem: combine a conventional horror movie with 'the horrors of war', and it's hard for supernatural unpleasantness to hold its own against man-made evils. The setting is also limiting on a visual level, the action adrift in mile upon mile of muddy ditches. Writer/director Bassett makes the most of a tight budget with a few nasty surprises, but the film chiefly relies on an overworked smoke machine permanently set at 'spooky evil mist'.

Release details

Duration: 95 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Michael J Bassett
Screenwriter: Michael J Bassett
Cast: Jamie Bell
RuaidhrĂ­ Conroy
Laurence Fox
Torben Liebrecht
Dean Lennox Kelly
Kris Marshall
Hans Matheson
Hugh O'Conor
Matthew Rhys
Andy Serkis

Average User Rating

2.5 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:0
  • 4 star:0
  • 3 star:1
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:0
LiveReviews|2
1 person listening
ed

No suspense and the lack of a cohesive plot. This was just a pale re-run of Alien (minus a physical assailant). It could have been so much more. Good actors wasted.

Andy S

Watched this on Film Four yesterday...very well shot, very spooky and dark. Jamie Bell is actually brilliant, as are most of the cast, but Andy Serkis hams it up too much as a total psycho in a silly role which is out of context with the time. Might have worked better with characters that were more likable...but the ending is nicely handled. Worth a look.