100 Bloody Acres

100 Bloody Acres (Cameron Cairnes, Colin Cairnes, 2012) Damon Herriman, Angus Sampson, Anna McGahan, Oliver Ackland, Jamie Kristian, John Jarratt; comedy horror

I think this is great fun. It subverts the gore horror flick by crossing it with not only romcom but also social problem themes. It's unusual to say this about a minor Oz film: it's well-written.

A gory and funny riff on the trusty standby of city kids being menaced by rural types, 100 Bloody Acres reps a promising feature debut for Aussie brothers Colin and Cameron Cairnes. Pumping fresh juice into the formula by way of villains driven by economic imperatives rather than bloodlust, and victims more concerned with workshopping relationship issues than escaping certain death, the pic is primed to please gorehounds and has sufficient smarts to attract more upscale viewers. Richard Kuipers, Variety.

The Cairnes brothers have clearly studied the work of another sibling duo whose last name starts with "C." But while the film's mix of over-the-top gore, yokel slapstick, deft wordplay and free-floating ominousness recalls Blood Simple and Fargo, 100 Bloody Acres is not a Coen brothers ripoff. Nor is it a laundry list of film school homages, which is no small feat when you consider that the script evokes everything from The Texas Chainsaw Massacre and Last House on the Left to Akira Kurosawa's Stray Dog and Yojimbo, Rob Zombie's The Devil's Rejects, and the exuberant exploitation pictures that Peter Jackson used to make.
Nothing about this film plays out quite as you'd expect. Matt Zoller Seitz, rogerebert.com.

Playing like a Down Under Elmore Leonard novel, 100 Bloody Acres features lucky breaks and quick reverses; a persistent soundtrack of Aussie oldies helps keep the mood cheery, despite a literal vatful of blood. Rob Staeger, Village Voice.

Brothers Colin and Cameron Cairnes have directed a stylish, well crafted and very funny horror comedy. One moment there is enough blood and bone crunching in the film to please a horror fan for the next 10 years (as well as a gross sex scene) and then it will have you laughing out loud, usually from the performance of Herriman who proves he is one of Australia's finest actors. jakebrown85, The Weekly Film Reviewer.

The tension is overridden by a farcical tone at times and so much is overdone that it is easy to switch off, feeling as though the party - and the joke - is over. Louise Keller, urban cinefile.

100 Bloody Acres: What went wrong?
Australian horror/comedy 100 Bloody Acres tanked at six Australian cinemas last weekend. Producer Julie Ryan has some compelling theories on why that happened. IF.

Director Colin Cairnes speaks out on piracy, IF.


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