Rumours of a great place to skate lead a group of teenagers out to the compound where, forty years prior, a cult killed a number of people that their leader had deemed ‘demons,’ before turning on each other. Before long, they start experiencing strange events.
As I think I’ve made clear in the past, I’m not actually opposed to found footage films. As long as the filming technique fits the story, I’m cool with it. But, dear filmmakers, can I please make a request? Can you just…keep the shaky-cam running scenes down to a minimum?
I feel like I’ve put in the effort to tame my motion sickness over the years, but I have my limits; and I’m pretty sure “this movie literally left me feeling like I was moments away from vomiting” is not the kind of review that you’re going for – unless you are, in which case there are better ways to go about achieving that result than treating your audience’s POV like it’s a dog’s favourite chew toy, okay?
With that out of the way, Raised by Wolves is, at best, okay. And ‘okay’ is definitely at the extreme end of the positive description spectrum.
The cast of young actors do an admirable job with the material that they’re given, but that material is largely a rehash of ideas that we’ve already seen a thousand times before, in every found footage film that’s come before it. In fact, there were moments where I found myself thinking, ‘That’s from The Blair Witch Project,’ or ‘Heh, just like in Paranormal Activity,’ so devoid of originality were the concepts on display.
Lacking originality isn’t a crime in and of itself. Heck, if it were, I probably would’ve given up watching movies (in general) years ago. Unfortunately, in this case it’s also combined with a paint-by-numbers approach to film making that, if not for the fact that the cast was doing a decent job, would have had me giving up on the movie well before the halfway mark. As it is, I repeatedly found myself checking the amount of time left – and wondering if I could afford to wait until the end before I went and found something to help with my swimming head and unsettled stomach.