Today, we're going to be looking at the latter of these two concepts with the SyFy Maneater Series installment "Roadkill" and the Fangoria FrightFest entry "Road Kill". Two different movies with similar names but rather different plots. Well...sorta different. Anyway, let's begin....and there may be spoilers, so be aware.
Starring: Kacey Barnfield, Oliver James, Eliza Bennett
Director: Johannes Roberts
Premise: While on a road trip through Ireland, a small group of friends have the worst luck when they encounter a small settlement of gypsies. They haggle for a necklace and get scammed. Sucks, but...well, c'mon... In retaliation, they steal the necklace, but during their getaway, they accidentally hit and kill a Gypsy fortune teller. When things can't possibly seem to get any worse, she curses them with her last breath to a fate worse than syphilis -- to be life raped, one by one by a giant mythical bird called a Roc (seriously, check the pic below).
Special Effects: For a movie straight from SyFy, I really didn't expect all too much...but, to be honest, the effects weren't that bad. A bit too much CG for my personal liking at times, but given the context of the movie, I'm not complaining too much here.
In a Nutshell: While it feels only a smidge above "made for TV" quality, this title was actually pretty decent, if you can get past the relative stupidity of the group. But snide jokes aside, this one really is worth checking out maybe once. The script is decent, the characters are a bit annoying at first, but in the end they're really not too bad. And plus, it beats "Sharktopus"....but not this "Sharktopus".
Alright, so we've checked out a movie about a flying feathered fury and the kids who piss it off. Next up is a movie that keeps its feet a bit closer to the ground...
Road Kill (2010)
Starring: Bob Morely, Sophie Lowe, Georgina Haig
Director: Dean Francis
Premise: Four friends take to the open Australian roads on a camping trip (already sounds a bit familiar...), but are rammed and run off the road by a huge semi-trailer truck called a road train (going by the back of the dvd and the front of the truck itself) after what I guess was the most effective bird flipping ever. And random note, according to IMDb, that was the original name for the movie -- Road Train. Go figure, eh? Anyway, understandably perturbed, they realize the truck has stopped as well and thus decide to give the driver a piece of their mind...only to find nobody behind the wheel. Moments later, as gunshots fill the air, they make the hasty decision to take the truck and seek help, and from that point, their lives take a turn for the worse.
Special Effects: As it pertains to gore, this movie didn't really have as much need for special effects as Roadkill. There was a broken arm and a few other injuries, mostly fatal, but that was about it. Nothing too major or graphic. The real magic was in the change in the characters as the movie progresses. They slowly go from fresh faced friends looking for a good time to road bedraggled survivors teetering on the brink of insanity...well, at least the guys start to go nuts. Either way, it looked pretty cool.
In a Nutshell: For what it was, Road Kill is a pretty good movie, easily worth owning. I think my favorite part about it is how original it felt. That meaning I don't know if this premise has been done before, necessarily, but a random truck that doesn't just chase people, but take over and fucking eat them seems pretty legit to me.
Who did it better?
Okay, so here's the part where I rant about which movie kicked the other's ass. The problem is, though, they were both actually pretty good. On one hand, you have a movie about a seemingly empty semi truck terrorizing a group of friends and lovers in the Australian Outback. Silently waiting while they slowly lose their cool and take each other out like a pack of rabid back-stabbing wolves. Now, on the other hand, we have a movie about a different group of friends who have to try to survive the wrath of a colossal bird-of-prey as well as a tribe of hoodwinking Gypsies bent on protecting themselves as well from the very curse they've placed upon the unlucky travelers.
Now as I've said before, both of these movies were pretty good, but in this instance, I have to say that Road Kill takes the victory. I truly did appreciate the fact that considering the rest of their titles, SyFy somewhat stepped their game up with the tale of the homicidal aerial raptor, but in the end it felt like something I've not only seen many times before, but felt could have been done a little bit better. Road Kill, on the other hand, was something again, more original and also much better executed. Once again, both movies are totally worth the time to check out but in the end, the winner is Road Kill...erm, the Aussie one.
|Yep...take a bow, psycho.|