Hell's Ground

Year:  2007
Director:  Omar Khan
Cast:  Kunwar Ali Roshan, Rooshanie Ejaz, Haider Raza, Rehan, Rubya Chaudry

A group of friends decide to take a little road trip to a rock concert.  Along the way, they are diverted from their route by a political protest. This proves to have grave consequences, as they soon run out of gas in the middle of the isolated Pakistani countryside. They are soon attacked by a throng of plague-striken zombies who are hungry for human flesh.  Just when they think they have escaped the creatures, their luck worsens tremendously when they stumble upon the hunting ground of a crazed psychopath clad in a burqa who is armed about a spike ball on a chain.

Pakistan certainly isn't country known for horror films. However, Omar Khan's frenzied entry into the genre exceeds expectations and is one of the most stylish, interesting, and atmospheric horror films of the past decade.   Hell's Ground is truly unlike any horror movie you will ever see.  It is a blend of styles and genres is an ambitious undertaking, but never does the film feel unfocused, which is quite an accomplishment it itself.   Certainly the abrupt and unexpected shift from zombie film to hardcore slasher film may be jarring to some, but they will quickly be transfixed by what is easily the most unique, creepy, and ruthless killer to grace the genre in quite some time.  And while the film obviously was made on a tight budget, it possesses bucket loads of style and atmosphere.  The film succeeds tremendously well at capturing the stylistic elements of a low-budget zombie film and then shifting with ease to into a style and atmosphere associated with a hardcore 80's backwoods slasher film.  It is truly hard to name another film that has the same look as this one and Khan was wise to blend different cultural elements into the film.  For most of the running time, the characters speak English, but do lapse into the native language in just the right moments. The soundtrack is also Pakistani and is actually highly effective in creating just the right mood and tension.   Despite the Pakitani influence, Khan is careful never to go overboard and isolate or turn off those who are not fans of foreign horror.   In fact, this film is a homage to some of the best American horror films in the history of the genre and it is clear Khan admires and appreciates the genre.  While most recent homages simply copy elements from the films they are paying homage to, this film provides enough originality and unique style to make it truly memorable.

This film is a must see for any horror fan.   It could have very easily ended up being a mess of a film, but instead stand shoulders above most recent genre entries.   

Fright Meter Grade:

No comments:

Post a Comment