♦ post author — Immortal Alexander ♦
Hello fellow creeps and crawly things. Welcome back to another looking into the black mirror of cinematic horror. This time I will be reviewing the horror anthology film “Southbound.”
Release Date: 2015
Five interlocking tales of terror follow the fates of a group of weary travellers who confront their worst nightmares – and darkest secrets – over one long night on a desolate stretch of desert highway. [IMDB.com]
♦ — ♦
Right off the bat I’d like to mention that this is one of the most cohesive anthology films I have seen in a long time. The five tales blend nicely together creating a fun microcosm of terror centered around a long lonely stretch of Texas highway.
As a filmmaker myself one of the things that stuck out is that the talented folks that made this film are definitely classic horror. The film has a nice gritty feel to it. It’s like a 70’s grind-house flick and John Carpenter had a blood spattered baby together. Especially when it comes to the score which is excellent. Whoever was the colorist for this film did an absolutely amazing job. I absolutely love the way this film looks and feels.
The visual fx were kind of a mixed bag. Some of it looked excellent and some of it looked a little too fake, but it never detracted from the film in any major way. The blood and gore on the other hand were spot on. Especially in my personal favorite of the five interwoven tales “The Accident.” The twilight zone feel of this one just grabbed me and wouldn’t let go. Of course the hospital scene is the “coup de gras” of this terrifying short, but the buildup was absolutely spellbinding.
I simply could not look away, and neither could Miss Andromeda as she would blurt out “I can’t take my eyes away from this” a number of times while watching “Southbound” with me. Each story had its own feel but they all had this potent sense of unease that permeated each frame of celluloid.
My second favorite story was “The Way Out” as it sets the tone for this anthology and lets us know that we are in for a bumpy ride on this hellish highway. Two men on the run are pursued by some kind of creatures that linger out in the desert, and no matter how fast they drive they can never get away.
Coming in third place is “Siren.” In this tale three young ladies in a punk band get stranded by the side of the road. A friendly couple helps them out by offering to let them stay at their cozy suburban home while they wait for their van to be fixed. This one has a feel similar to “The Stepford Wives” and is highly disturbing.
The last two shorts “Jailbreak,” and “The Way In” were both interesting but didn’t have the same punch as the other three. “Jailbreak” is about a guy looking for his lost sister, and “The Way In” is about a family trying to spend some quality time together when they have some uninvited guests.
This one is best served fresh and steamy with little to no spoilers prior to feasting on this delectable slice of cinema.
I give “Southbound” 4.5 out of 5 blood spattered stars. It loses half a star for some of the uneven digital fx, and since not all of the stories are as jaw dropping. Even so the film as a whole is very entertaining and well worth a watch for any horror fan that loves anthologies and is a little tired of the found footage variety.
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About Immortal Alexander
I am currently working on another web series that will be a dark supernatural drama. I am also working on a compilation of Slam Poetry that encompasses my old free association writing and new material. I will be writing many more short stories for the Horror Made blog that I hope to publish in other horror publications as well.
Here’s some of the film work I’ve done:
Writer & Director for “Haunting Light” web series.