A Crack In The Floor

A Crack In The Floor

***

Reviewed by: Angus Wolfe Murray

When you look closer than half a mile, the credibility of this there's-something- nasty-under-the-floorboards horror flick disintegrates before your eyes. No matter. Following the traditions of the genre, there are memorable moments. How would you feel after going for a slash in the woods one evening to find your girlfriend with her head back-to-front, lying on the ground where you left her mid-snog?

The idea is that young Jeremiah watched his mother being raped and murdered by two hillbillies outside their shack in the depths of Deliverance country, which drove him crazy. For the next 33 years he lived in a room under the house and if anyone came near, he speared them with a pitchfork, whacked them over the head with a farming implement or caught them in a man-sized gin trap.

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These victims were hikers, mostly, reported as missing persons. The local sheriff's office was not exactly quick on the draw and so nothing was done. City folk, losing themselves in the woods, was an occupational hazard. Until, one day, a low-flying plane reported seeing a car in the reservoir. On closer inspection, over 20 were discovered.

Before you wonder how a reclusive nutcase learnt to drive, the six friends are being introduced. They are the equivalent of teen fodder in Halloween movies, except much more fun. The deal is that they went on trips together every year, usually somewhere off the beaten track, involving adventure, excitement and a hint of danger. This summer, they land up in Jeremiah's shack, with the old purve spying on them through a hole in the floor.

Directed by actors Corbin Timbrook and Sean Stanek, the film has been made with care and attention by aficionados. The horror cliches are here for a reason, as a tribute. When Gary Busey and Ron Howard's dad, Rance, appear in cameo roles, as a couple of in-breds, who enjoy teasing tourists with dead chickens, you wonder whether this is a spoof, but when Jeremiah is disturbed from his Bible reading by the sound of happy holidaymakers, you know it's serious.

Reviewed on: 31 Oct 2001
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A shy nutter has penchant for stray hikers who use his shack for shelter.
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