Buckout Road (CIFF 2017)

Despite some rumination on religion and myth, and the value that both have to society, Buckout Road never actually wants to make much of a point about it. Instead, it uses these discussion topics as a way to frame its horror, which involves a specific location near White Plains, New York, which has several urban legends attached to it. When several young adults start having nightmares about those legends, they begin to wonder if, perhaps, they’re real—and if they’re going to be killed by them.

Buckout Road is a horror-mystery film. It has a lot of jump startles (and fake jump startles) and “scary” images, particularly from the nightmares the characters experience. The plot is a mystery, as these people go around trying to figure out exactly what’s going on. The resolution to the mystery is a letdown—it felt like, perhaps, it was building to something more interesting. Maybe it was limited by budget. Unfortunately, and understandably, that sometimes happens.

What we get is a somewhat lacking movie that doesn’t build much atmosphere, has too many jump startles, has decent-at-best acting, and loses our attention prior to its conclusion. It has some good actors like Danny Glover and Colm Feore, but either underuses them or makes them exposition dumps—or both. It has some fun moments, and it has plenty of blood, but overall it’s just another cheap horror movie that will fall into the pile.

Conclusion: Buckout Road starts decently but its mystery isn’t that interesting and it isn’t very scary. But it has lots of blood!

Recommendation: Buckout Road is destined to be another cheap horror movie that some genre fans will want to see but most people will have no desire to watch.

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