Writer: James Di Martino (Screenplay)
Starring: Sophie Thurling, Lucas Pittaway, Andy McPhee, Roger Ward, Albert Goikhman, Brendan Bacon, Daniel Reader
Plot: Emily is a recovering cancer survivor of three years. Faced with her fear of getting sick again, her best friend Nina plans a weekend away. Six friends venture out to a country holiday house to party over a weekend. Cut off from the rest of the world they soon learn the inhabitants are unsettling red neck individuals who terrorize and humiliate travelers. At the same time a para-normal monster seen as the faceless man haunts the house pushing the friends to their limits.
Runtime: 1 Hour 40 Minutes
There may be spoilers in the rest of the review
Story: The Faceless Man starts when Emily (Thurling) a recovering cancer survivor who has starting to put her life back together is spending a weekend away with friends, Nina (Kauffeld), Kyle (Pittaway), Brad (Facciolo), Dave (Astifo) and Chad (Walia) are having a weekend away for parties.
It isn’t long before the group of friends have upset the local rednecks who decide to terrorize them, a ruthless drug dealer Viktor Nov (Goikhman) searching for them, while Emily is dealing with her own insecurities about her recover, which manifests itself in a faceless figure haunting her.
Thoughts on The Faceless Man
Characters – Emily is a cancer survivor, she made it with friends, not family and has just started to put her life back together, despite having the fear that one day it would return, which appears to her in living nightmares including a faceless man figure, out of the group of friends this is the only character that gets much outside the generics traits we learn, we have the friend that wants more of a relationship, the one that will push the limits of drugging people, a few jokers and the best friend who can’t handle their substances. Eddie is the owner of the rented house, he comes off creepy to the city slickers as he puts it, he doesn’t want trouble in his property and will deal with anybody that causes it. Viktor Nov is the ruthless drug dealer that has been hunting for his drugs which have a connection to the group of friends, he uses his muscle to kill anybody that disrespects him.
Performances – Sophie Thurling in the leading role is one of the highlights in the film, seeing Sophie balance the mindset of her character through the film will keep us wondering just what will happen next, Albert Goikhman as the ruthless drug dealer is fun to watch, we always know something violent is going to happen when he is on the screen. Andy McPhee does bring the awkward local to life well too.
Story – The story follows a group of friends that want to go on a drink & drug filled party weekend, only to end up in a town that isn’t happy with this lifestyle and that want to send a message to them, while we also see one character haunted by a terrifying looking faceless man. This story does have plenty going on, which works in and against it because you could easily drop one of the side stories and still have an enjoyable horror movie, but mixing them together does add to the mystery of what will happen next, because it does feel like nobody is safe from what is going on. We could have had more development on the group of friends, as it they end up coming off like your usual slasher cast. With the different arcs we do get plenty of violence which is what the film wants to pay respect to the Ozploitation era of cinema, which will help understand the tone of the film.
Horror – The most impressive part of the horror in this film comes from the Faceless Man himself, it comes early in creepy moments, but the reveal of the creature is one of the most terrifying figures in horror this year.
Settings – The film is set in a small town location, with most of the action happening in the one house picked for the party, it shows how things can get out of hand and how uninvited guests can cause more problems in life.
Special Effects – The effects to create the Faceless Man are brilliant, he will scare you, where this film also shines is by letting us imagine the damage being down, with the chainsaw scene being played out longer than needed, which only adds to the horror being inflicted.
That Moment That Annoyed Me – The group of friends are not that interesting.
Final Thoughts – This is a horror film built of paying respect to the Ozploitation era of cinema, it brings us plenty of blood and keeps us guessing along the way.
Overall: Ozploitation has returned.