If you follow my blog it’s clear that I consider the 80’s the Golden Age of Horror, I am a huge fan of practical effects as well as giant monsters in the “Natural Horror” genre and the 1980’s was abundant with both.
There is a film that without question clearly holds all these qualities,an Ozploitation (Australian Exploitation) film called Razorback.
Razorback starts with Beth Winters an American reporter investigating animal abuses in a renegade pet food factory located in the Australian outback.
When videotaping two kangaroo trappers performing questionable activities, the men of ill repute track her down and proceed to rape her. In the midst of their sexual assault they are chased away by an unseen beast which then attacks Beth in her car and is she presumably eaten,
Her husband Carl takes offense to the absurd reports that she fell down a mine shaft never to be heard of again. Carl immediately flies out to the desolate land down under to seek answers only to meet a codjury old man yelling wild stories about how Carls wife alike his baby grandson was eaten by a vicious legend called a razorback:an enormous feral boar gone unchecked due to lack of natural enemies and an abundant amount of food.
What I like about this film is that it takes a similar approach from Jaws. Director Russel Mcelroy uses fast cutting techniques, filters and strobe lighting scenes to tease the image of the giant monster. Throughout the film the animatronic creature is only seen through segmented views and skewered angles to entice the viewer into creating an image of the beast in their own head.
Director of Photography Dean Semler does an amazing job recreating on screen the vastness of the Australian Outback,his experience on Mad Max 2 helps with the credibility of Carl’s trek throughout the Land Down Under and a final showdown with the monster responsible for the death of his wife.
Of course this is the 80’s and there are unlikely scenarios but then again I am saying this about a movie about a ravenous giant boar eating babies and nosey reporters.
This movie is a wild trip into a desert wilderness of a very dangerous continent revealing a terrifying beast beyond comprehension, what else could you possibly want from an 80’s horror film? 4 Claws