14th Sep2011

‘Wreckage’ DVD Review

by Paul Metcalf

Stars: Scoot McNairy, Aaron Paul, Kelly Kruger, Mike Erwin | Written by David Frigerio | Directed by John Mallory Asher


When Wreckage first started it had me worried. The basic premise of the opening scene is two kids caught up in a shooting of their mother and her bully of a boyfriend. The thing that worried me was the acting and quality of the effects on the shooting. It just seemed to be a failed scene in what should have been the opener to lay the grounds for the movie. Not a good sign at all.

Gladly this changed quickly though as we moved on into the “years later” scenario and the story found its footing. It’s a typical tale where we are introduced to four average young people who take drive into the middle of nowhere but end up breaking down. They remember they saw a junk yard a few miles back so go there to find the parts needed to fix their car but after an accident with a gun and an idiotic joke one of them is shot and injured so one of them has to go get an ambulance and the police to help with the scene.

The problem they have is that there is a psycho on the loose. When the ambulance arrives to help with the shot friend they find nobody there at all, the police who are also on the scene suspect that the boy is wasting their time, until blood is found and a body hanging above the ground. This leads to a hunt for not only the missing people but also the escaped lunatic who they assume is the perpetrator of the crimes.

What surprised me about Wreckage was the fact that it started off weak and had a feel of a cheap horror that would be overlook able but finds its feet fairly quickly. It’s a case of one bad actor in the first scene being replaced by an ensemble cast that outperform that one flaw with a story added to that is quite simple yet manages to be entertaining and makes the watcher actually interested in what they’re seeing. It’s not obvious who the killer is, or it could be to some and I just did not put enough thought into it but I was genuinely surprised and enjoyed the reveal. After the reveal of course comes the almost inevitable comedown as I feel twists like this never really manage to live up to the moment of realisation. Luckily this isn’t a repeat of the feeling of failure in the first scene so the movie does not end on a negative, just feels more mediocre than what was being set up.

As well as the story being strong enough to be entertaining I would say for the most part it’s a strong cast that holds this movie together. There are no major stars in the movie but most gave good performances. Even a character who is only there for comic relief and to be honest is very unrealistic and farcical works as it is used to lighten up the mood and make what could have been boring scenes a little more interesting. His constant one liners about his exploits in the junk yard make you wonder what his true motives are for being there, and exactly who he is which of course makes him into quite an interesting character. It’s just a shame that the first scene was marred with bad acting.

For what it is, this movie does what it says on the box. It’s got violence and plenty of blood, it takes a concept that’s not exactly original and manages to make it interesting for the length of the movie, with characters that are not as two dimensional as they could have been. Through good acting, and a storyline that at least keeps you interested, Wreckage will keep you watching until the end to figure out where exactly the killer is hiding and who he actually is.


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