LONG WEEKEND (1978) Review

Directed by: Colin Eggleston
Starring: John Hargreaves, Briony Behets

The last three reviews I've done have all been recent films, so I thought I'd write about a few older ones for a change. I'm starting off with this wilderness horror film from 1978. Long Weekend follows the theme of killer animals but in a much different way than movies like Rogue or Black Water. As the tagline reads "Their crime was against nature. Nature found them guilty"

Peter (Hargreaves) and Marcia (Behets) are a couple with a problematic relationship. They decide to have a relaxing weekend vacation at a remote beach. But of course, they have no idea what is in store for them. The tension between the pair only gets worse as they finally reach their destination and when they finally do arrive, they realize that something isn't quite right. The sounds of angry animals from within the trees, spear guns firing by their own volition etc.
I found the creepiest part of the film to be the dugong that just won't die. Peter shoots it with his rifle, thinking it to be a shark, but realises his mistake when its corpse washes up on the shore and he covers it with sand.
But even though full of bullet holes, it keeps showing up in different locales...
Before they know it, the couple seem to be under attack by animals both from the ground and the air. 

Even though they are the victims, Peter and Marcia's disregard for their environment (whether it be spraying ants with insecticide or chopping down trees) is what incurs the wrath of the wildlife, and is ultimately their downfall. It's pretty hard to feel any kind of sympathy for them, especially with their arrogant attitudes.

The dialogue is very minimal, fitting the role of the quarrelling couple and helping to add a sense of isolation. The spooky cries of animals in the distance adds to the feeling of uneasiness felt throughout the film. The acting is spot on and even the animal attack scenes are impressive for something made in the 70's. 

Filled with tension and with a few shocking moments, this original and frightening Australian horror/thriller will definitely stay with you for a while after viewing. And the ironic finale is the perfect ending to a fantastic film

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