Indie horror is facing a critical time as the means and resources for these films have become easier to acquire. That also means it’s easier to steal as some filmmakers are finding out. Well hopefully in the world of horror the evil that resides in these films will make torrent and bootleggers think otherwise. Jessy Dupont’s THE DARK SHACK maybe one of those types of films as it proves no evil deed goes untouched. THE DARK SHACK is a film that mixes the lore of a local legend with the intensity of a crime drama to create a nice little supernatural entry. While I enjoyed the idea behind the film certain execution didn’t allow THE DARK SHACK to blossom in a way that it could. Similar to indie films from all lands there is always a give and take so it’s important to look past any minor things and enjoy what’s presented in front of you.
In THE DARK SHACK we get a few storylines that eventually connect even though it seems rather far fetched it would do down in such manners. The EVIL DEAD style presence of the dark forces lurking in the woods was actually very welcomed to see. It set up the beginning of the movie nicely but failed to capitalize on its momentum. We find a group of friends enjoying a few drinks at the local watering hole before returning back to one of their houses. When one friend is left behind she is kidnapped by a few criminals and taken to a mysterious shack in the woods. This shack has a secret that the whole town is aware of and a night out with friends becomes a hellish nightmare for all involved.
What hurts the appreciation of the THE DARK SHACK is there was just too much focus on characters that were important to the story but not anyone you would invest in. I think if the film would have focused more on the evil in the woods then the degenerate kidnappers and perverted friends it could have flourished more. Once you get to the point of what to expect from dark presence it will have you wanting more. There is an amazing section of uncomfortableness in the film that will remind you of a classic scene from Tom Holland’s CHILD PLAY. Think Voodoo dolls and you will catch my drift. There was a lot more that I really wanted to enjoy from this film but the lead up was too much of a slow burn with replaceable characters doing the bidding. The talent did a fine job with what they were given but their worth of the film was felt early enough to move past some of the lingering presentation and get to the good stuff. Still THE DARK SHACK is an creative and imaginative film that shows tons of promise in Dupont. My only advice would be to cut back on the character development and rev up on the evil factor so that audiences won’t feel that this is just another indie flick with tons of potential and no substance. Hopefully THE DARK SHACK will get a nice home entertainment run because there are few things here that we know many horror fans will enjoy.
THE DARK SHACK is directed by Jessy Dupont and stars Daniel Leclec, Amanda Lynn Petrin, Matt Connors, Ash Andre Fidelia, Alexandra Doucet, Otto Szabo and Vanessa Lynn Rancourt. You can now rent THE DARK SHACK on demand from REELHOUSE here.