Barricade: Welcome to Hell DVD Review
Reviewed by Peter West
Directed by Timo Rose
Written by Ted Geoghegan & Timo Rose
2007, Region 0 (NTSC), 97 Minutes, Unrated
DVD released on February 9th, 2007
Synopsis from the official site: Nina (Raine Brown) is visiting her longtime friend Michael (Joseph Zaso) and his pal David (André Reissig) in Germany for a much needed vacation. The trio decides that, to get their mind off their day-to-day lives, a camping trip into the nearby Black Forest will do them all well.
Little do they know, a clan of bloodthirsty ghouls also calls this area of the woods their home – and they don't take kindly to strangers impeding on their land!
As the bodies begin piling up, the friends' innocent vacation becomes a horrific battle for survival. The cannibalistic monsters know the forest better than anyone... and their victims are in for the fight of their lives.
It's hard to review a film about mutant cannibals living in the woods without thinking back to other noteworthy films in the genre such as Wrong Turn, The Hills Have Eyes, and Just Before Dawn. Barricade does make it's own niche in the genre... It's gorier than every other mutant cannibal film put together in my opinion. Barricade is an assault on your senses. If you can't take gore, you won't get through the first five minutes of this splatterfest! Gore aside, Barricade also has some decent character development and some plot twists at the end that I didn't see coming...
The acting from the actors that do speak (mutant cannibals really never have nothing interesting to say anyway) is top notch. Zaso, Brown and Reissig take the repore they established off camera and bring it out in front of the lens. When I listened to Joe Zaso and Raine Brown on the commentary it was evident that they had good time filming Barricade over in Germany and that Timo Rose was enjoyable to work with. Combine the cast having fun and a budget that was probably 50% for gore effects, the finished product is not your average "killers in the woods" flick.
Barricade is a true low budget gem. It's Timo Rose's answer to all those other horror films that are too slow and wait till the end before you finally see some decent action. While there is a little nudity, it's very well placed in the story and not there just for the sake of showing some boobies. From the very beginning the body count keeps growing and the tension builds to a very dramatic conclusion. For $14.95 you might just want to give Barricade a look. It's a pretty fun flick and you sure won't be able to say it wasn't gory enough...
Video and Audio:
The DVD I received was a DVD-R screener, so I really don't know how the finished product is going to look when it's released on February 23, 2007. All info I see on the film has it as a 1.85:1 widescreen. On my DVD player it was more like a 2.35:1 non anamorphic widescreen. The audio track was in Dolby 2.0 stereo. Many times when I receive a screener on DVD-R this happens and when the DVD is released, it's 16x9 enhanced and has a Dolby 5.1 track, I have no idea which this will be.
What I did see on the screener was a film that in parts intentionally has that gritty 16mm look, and purposely scratched to capture that feeling of the late '60s, early '70s era. Most of the original score is from directory Timo Rose himself. The songs that are occasionally throw in, are in one case a '70s era folk type and German gangsta rap in another...
The screener included two featurettes. I Survived Barricade is a collection of interviews with the cast and crew, discussing their time in Germany, their roles, and why they agreed to be covered from head-to-toe in gore. Behind the Barricade is a behind-the-scenes look at the creation of the film, including looks at how Timo and his crew created the movie's amazing prosthetic and digital effects. Joe Zaso and Raine Brown do a commentary track for the film which is highly entertaining and carries over the evident chemistry they had working on the film. Also there's a still gallery and the goriest trailer that I have every seen... A really good job!