After seeing Alex Chandon's Cradle of Fear and really enjoying it, I was looking forward to Inbred. The trailer was brilliant (Yorkshire nippers prodding a bloody human scarecrow with sticks, an everyday occurrence in certain parts of Rotherham) and all the images I'd seen filled me with a great sense of anticipation. My only worry was that the best film of the festival might be first and things would go downhill from there.
Then we get a disappointing start. Two adults and four teenagers, of which two are intensely irritating, in a van. They are supposed to be irritating, but that still doesn't stop them from grating. I wanted them to die quickly.
It does come, but by the time they get offed you've warmed to them a bit. Inbred finally picks up (after a Wicker Man/An American Werewolf in London style pub scene) when our plucky group start to strip recyclable parts from old trains. Some of the locals, from the small village of Mortlake, think it would be a laugh to rape two of the teenagers with vegetables. Fortunately, we are spared this sight as Geoff (James Doherty) sees them off. Unfortunately, he falls in the process and picks up quite a nasty cut.
From here on in, the film becomes more and more depraved, but all with a Yorkshire slant. The landlord (Seamus O'Neill) puts on shows for the locals, involving teenagers, horses, muck spreaders, bucket masks, pig masks and the word 'dirty'. And yet more vegetables.
Inbred is played for laughs. The second half had me laughing and chuckling throughout. Granted, you need a slightly skewed, black sense of humour; this won't appeal to fans of Mrs Brown's Boys. If you liked The League of Gentlemen you will probably like this. Adding to the comedy, the outsiders, led by (Jo Hartley) all play it completely straight and you do feel for them, especially when they get locked in a small room, awaiting the locals.
One downside is the inclusion of Paddy from Emmerdale. However good or bad he is, he's always going to be Paddy from Emmerdale. Every time you see him you are brought out of the film. Plus, he milks his facial tic like nobody's business.
I won't spoil any of the jokes or amusing deaths, but rest assured, there's lots of gore. The visual effects were all done by Alex Chandon and although they're not up there with the cream of the crop, they're pretty impressive for someone working on their own. This was a great start to the festival and after it, I was still worried that it had peaked too soon. But had it? Read on.
If you like this you could also try:
The Wicker Man, Braindead.