Reviewed by GREG KING

Director: Lucky McKee

Stars: Pollyana McIntosh, Sean Bridges.

A tough, confronting yet engrossing horror film, The Woman is not your typical horror film, with serial killers, lots of blood and gore and screaming virgins running and dying. The film actually delves into darker territory and deals with themes of domestic violence, violence against women, and the nasty ways in which humans can treat others.

The Woman is a sequel of sorts to Andrew van der Houten’s 2009 thriller Offspring, and Pollyana McIntosh reprises her role, except this time the feral heroine becomes a victim rather than the villain. She is captured by Christopher Cleek (Sean Bridges, from Deadwood, etc), a small town lawyer, who brings her back to his ranch, and chains her up in his cellar in the hopes of civilising her. The rest of the family reacts in different ways to her presence. McKee slowly strips away the surface veneer of this seemingly typical white bread family to expose deeper layers of corruption.

The Woman has been written by cult horror director Lucky McKee (May, etc) and novelist Jack Ketchum, who Stephen King once described as “the scariest writer in America.” The film has polarised audiences, and received a particularly virulent response at its premiere at the Sundance Film Festival.

The Woman is undeniably unflinching in its approach and McKee eschews the usual formula of this genre, which makes for tough viewing.




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