Backcountry (2015) Review

Spoiler-free so you can read before you watch

Backcountry (2015) Review

Horrorific content by adrian on July 19th, 2019 | Movie Review | Survival, Tourist, Wilderness, Wildlife

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It's about a couple of city yuppies who decide to go hiking into the deep wilderness, off-trail, without a map, a phone or food. What could go wrong?

Backcountry was directed by Adam Macdonald (who also directed Pyewacket) and stars Missy Peregrym, Jeff Roop (from Final Draft) and Eric Balfour (from Little Red Rotting Hood, Dinoshark, Horsemen).


Backcountry Review

Backcountry is a lot like Crawl, Frozen or The Shallows, where people get stranded somewhere and have to fight the elements to survive. In Crawl the elements were a hurricane and alligators, in Frozen it was the cold and wolves. In The Shallows it was a shark. In Backcountry it's a bear.

Backcountry is a visually beautiful film, it's well shot and both the cinematography and editing are polished. You find yourself getting lost in every detail. The characters can be frustrating, but it's intentional and the solid acting really sells that fact. I actually found Backcountry interesting in that the frustration of the characters and how they dealt with adversity added quite a bit of depth to them. It's easy for these kinds of movies, with such a basic premise, to create throwaway characters that you don't really care about. Backcountry did a good job of creating a connection with the doomed couple long before they got doomed, so that by the time they're doomed you almost wish they weren't, even though you wanted to see a bear doom someone.

And you know this bear's gonna eat.

Every single problem this couple faced was entirely preventable. They venture into some woods the boyfriend hasn't been to since he was a teen. He refuses to bring a map. He secretly takes his girlfriend's phone and leaves it in the car. They skimp on food and water. And then to make matters worse he drags her out into even the more middle of nowhere to a secret spot that's so secret he can't even find it. They might as well have vacationed in the suicide forest.

The setup of the movie takes forever too. If you sit down to watch Backcountry be prepared to be teased with foreshadowing for a good hour before anything happens. It's not a boring hour by any means, but the pacing is definitely slow.

But the payoff!! Once the action actually kicks in, it really kicks in! One of the bear attacks is legendary. It makes The Revenant look like Winnie the Pooh.

The Revenant

Worth Watching?

If you like realistic survival movies that are more disturbing than shocking than you'll probably like Backcountry.

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