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Eden Lake

  • Film
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Time Out Says

4 out of 5 stars
This fierce, thought-provoking ‘survival horror’ movie from ‘My Little Eye’ co-writer James Watkins sounds like a tabloid headline: Lovers’ Lakeside Hoody Horror. The romantic peace of Kelly Reilly and Michael Fassbender’s remote idyll is shattered by a gang of kids with a loud beat-box and a boisterous Rottweiler. Verbal confrontations escalate into knife-wielding violence, then the couple are hunted and tortured in the surrounding woods.

This is not, however, a Daily Mail rant about feral chavs. Instead, Watkins uses stomach-knotting tension and tongue-slicing horror to explore the complex dynamics of anti-social violence. We identify with the victims throughout, but Watkins also depicts the complex peer-group pressures within the gang  and the pain and confusion behind its leader’s eyes. The film’s one major fault is that Reilly’s character repeatedly acts in ways that serve the plot, but which run contrary to rational human behaviour. By contrast, the shattering downbeat ending is well earned and genuinely shocking.
Written by Nigel Floyd

Release Details

  • Rated:18
  • Release date:Friday 12 September 2008
  • Duration:91 mins

Cast and Crew

  • Director:James Watkins
  • Screenwriter:James Watkins
  • Cast:
    • Thomas Turgoose
    • Kelly Reilly
    • Michael Fassbender
    • Bronson Webb
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