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John’s Horror Corner: Indigenous (2014), pretty much The Descent with Chupacabras in a Panamanian jungle.

March 11, 2016

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MY CALL:
Director Alastair Orr may not amaze us with this Descent knock-off, but he demonstrates that he is highly capable of entertaining us with an unoriginal story and a slim budget. This was totally watchable. I’m looking forward to seeing what he does next. MORE MOVIES LIKE Indigenous: Forget this flick. Just go watch The Descent (2005).

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This starts out feeling vaguely reminiscent of The Ruins (2008). A bunch of 20-somthings go on a Central American vacation and a side-trek goes horribly wrong as they discover the local fauna. It takes place in the extremely remote Panamanian forest Darien Gap, which is allegedly the reason we can’t drive from North America to South America.  They go on a jungle hiking adventure to find a nearby “secret” waterfall that the locals warn not to visit. It’s too dangerous. Why? It just is. The real answer: chupacabras.

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I have no complaints about the acting or general production value, it all seems up to snuff–decent, in fact. It seems that this film was trying to make an above-ground version of The Descent (2005) with chupacabras. The result is moderately entertaining, but it doesn’t come close to its predecessor.

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From here on, we observe a series of Descent knock-off gimmicks rehashed in lower quality as our 20-somethings are picked off by hairless, albino, blind flesh-eating bat people that squeal like stuck velociraptors whenever they move. The gore includes a chewed off face, a grotesque leg wound, and various other bloody messes. It’s generally not a very gory movie, but it has its moments. Eventually our victims wander into a deep network of bat caves complete with offal pits of slimy human bones. The budget limitations are most apparent when you realize you never see more than one monster at a time.  But they look alright.

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They did a pretty good job with the characters. I wasn’t really rooting for any of them, but they did a great job making the tough guy jock into a scared-shitless mumbling survivor and I wouldn’t exactly say I didn’t care about them at all…just not as much as I should have.

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Director Alastair Orr may not amaze us with this flick, but he demonstrates that he is highly capable of assembling something entertaining even with a highly unoriginal knock-off story, no major actors and a slim budget. I’m looking forward to seeing what he does next.

Indigenous

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Indigenous

 

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