ROGUE (2008) Review

Directed by: Greg McLean
Starring: Radha Mitchell, Michael Vartan, Sam Worthington, Mia Wasikowska

Australia isn't very well known for producing great horror films. In fact if you look at Australian films in general, they're mostly average with perhaps a handful of greats. But one thing Australia is well known for is it's deadly wildlife. Snakes, spiders, baby-eating dingoes and of course crocodiles. 

From director Greg McLean (Wolf Creek) comes this classic killer animal movie set in the remote Australian outback. It follows a group of tourists on a sightseeing tour down a river in the Northern Territory. Among the group are the American travel writer Pete (Vartan), a couple with their young daughter Sherry (Wasikowska) and some other less important characters. Then of course there is the tour guide Kate (Mitchell)

After a seemingly normal tour down the river (apart from a run-in with a smartass Sam Worthington and his mate) the group is all set to turn around and head back. But of course something comes up. A distress flare is spotted by one of the tourists, and as the boat's captain it is Kate's responsibility to investigate.
Eventually they find an overturned, half-submerged boat and everybody is starting to get a little creeped out. This is of course, the moment when everything goes wrong.

The group end up marooned on a tiny island when their boat is wrecked by a monster crocodile. And (surprise, surprise) the radio doesn't work! Well damn, I sure didn't expect that...
They soon realise that the croc is hunting them and won't leave until everybody has been killed and eaten. In the ensuing panic, mistakes are made and people die, and I noticed a couple of moments where I had to stop myself from yelling at the stupidity of some people. Fortunately those moments were not frequent enough to put me off however.

The performances are great all-round, especially those from Radha Mitchell and Michael Vartan. And Sam Worthington does an impressive job of playing an asshole. Thank god he doesn't have to fake an american accent in this movie. The scenery is great and the special effects are top notch, with McLean showing very little of the beast until the end, thus forcing your imagination to fill in the blanks.
Unfortunately however, there is only so much you can do with a group of people stuck in the same location. Eventually it changes from survival horror to man vs beast, with Vartan's character taking on the monster head-on. 
Although Rogue follows a predictable formula, there were a few unexpected moments and I think that overall it is a great addition to the killer animal genre and an extremely fun film to watch.

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