29 Jan Review: 2020s The Marshes
2020s The Marshes | Horror Review
Deep in a remote marshland, three young biologists conduct research but when they encounter an ancient evil, science ends and survival begins
For our first 2020 Shudder Original review, we have The Marshes from first-time feature length director Roger Scott, and features Dafna Kronental as Dr Pria, Sam Delich as Will, Matthew Cooper as Ben and more.
We start off meeting the team of researchers preparing to head out to collect samples from an area in danger of disappearing. On their trip there, they have an unpleasant encounter with some locals, and once they arrive at their camp in “The Marshes,” bad stuff starts happening. Is it the local hunters? Or something more sinister? Is that a trite enough wrap-up to my summary?
When it comes to film, photography, design or anything creative, there is a balance between form and function. Having too much form and not enough function can leave people wanting some more meat. Too much function doesn’t appeal to something built in all of us to see things that look nice.
This one suffers from too much form and not enough function. For a low-budget/indie film, it’s shot and scored pretty well, and has an excellent run time. But there’s just not enough to the story here, and it didn’t do anything really different. In fact, though, it did reinforce something that is proven time and time again by film:
Australia is a terrible place.
Between dingos eating babies, spiders that don’t care about water, the Brown Snake, and murderers in the outback, I have zero desire to ever go there. New Zealand? Heck yeah! They don’t have any of that there. But just a few miles (well, 2500) away, there’s all kinds of murderous stuff lurking. And The Marshes had several examples of that.
I’m kidding of course, my Aussie friends. I love you. But I’m not really kidding…
My biggest issue with The Marshes is there’s just not enough to the story to keep me engaged, and not enough kills to satisfy the horror fan in me. Not all films need to have that, but when you’ve lost me with the story, I do need something to keep me going.
I do though, for what they had, did a decent job. I think this director has some potential, and with some more resources, could come up with something really pretty good.