Incest, rape, cannibalism, revenge: perfect recipe for a late night offering accompanied by a pint of beer. Pity it's so grim and lacking any real entertainment value.
Based on a true story, this film tells the charming tale of two sisters who are raped and brutalised by their father. Things get worse when they finally escape their father's clutches as Uncle Costello, a local drug lord, sends his goons to look for his stash of drugs.
Hidden in the Woods loosely fits into the rape revenge genre but doesn't follow the traditional structure of rape, rehabilitation, revenge as so ably demonstrated by I Spit on Your Grave. Although that film was incredibly gruelling, it still delivered when the revenge sequence finally came round. Although empathy is developed for the two female leads, this is quashed when they start eating people, and the ending is so downbeat that none of the usual satisfaction of this genre is felt.
This is not the greatest advert for the Chilean tourist board. As proof, the most sympathetic male in the whole film is the cannibalistic inbred offspring from a father/daughter rape. The other men in the film are some of the most reprehensible characters that you're likely to see this year. Bleak stuff indeed.
Normally, I like my films to be extra bleak and grim, with really down endings, but this fails because there is virtually no entertainment value. If the sisters had been developed further (possibly not cannibals too?) and - I can't believe I'm saying this - it had a positive outcome for them, it would have been a better film. As it is, it's not one I can recommend although I have learnt that I will never go to Chile.
If you like this you could also try:
I Spit on Your Grave, Ms. 45, The Last House on the Left.