Long Weekend

Long Weekend ★★★★

The 2018 Cult Movie Challenge
Week 12: Ozsploitation Week

I love quiet movies with intense, knowing cinematography that covers the scenes like a hungry but patient vulture, making for a film that's an atmospheric slow burn. That's Long Weekend, a story of a married couple (Briony Behets & John Hargreaves) who seem to have reached an impasse in their relationship, the nature of which becomes clear during their camping trip that's the focal point of this film.

We watch them on their trip, their hostility towards each other frequently thick enough to cut with a knife, and we soon realize that someone else is watching them. But who? In addition to being harsh with each other, they're harsh to the world around them. Considerate environmentalists these two ain't, and it seems like nature is starting to bite back at them.

The film is built on a very thin premise, but it gets a lot of mileage from it thanks to the sharp performances from the two leads, cinematography which makes good use of the beach and outback setting, and some inspired sound design (loved how in one scene where an empty gas can is being filled at a station, the ambient audio seems to be coming from inside the can). Admittedly the film gets mired down as it goes along, but that's part of the point, and even then there's a lot of metaphorical unpacking you could be doing about what's really going on with this story.

While l don't think I agree with what it seems this film is trying to say, I still found the execution of it all to be interesting. This is a Horror film to be sure, but not your usual type: it's less Friday the 13th and more a 70's Australian take on Lars Von Trier's Antichrist. Keep your expectations low, and you might be surprised with all this film ends up delivering.

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