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Kidnapping at The Cottage
The Cottage (DVD)
Member Name: rleigh
The Cottage (DVD)
Advantages: Suspense built well in parts, a bit funny at times.
Disadvantages: Poor script, very flat film on the whole, lacks overall energy and excitement.
Brothers David and Peter come up with a master plan in order to bag a large sum of cash between them. The plan is that they'll kidnap the daughter of a big time gangster, hold her hostage, and demand £100,000 ransom. It all seems so simple, it doesn't quite go according to plan however and before long everything starts to go wrong for the two brothers. As the £100,000 looks increasingly less likely to become theirs, things go from bad to worse and the brothers, along with their hostage Tracey find themselves to be in a very sticky situation indeed. This bungled kidnapping gets incredibly messy as our key protagonists find themselves fighting for their lives.
Never does 'The Cottage' ever seem to really get going, it paces along and is mildly amusing in parts, on the whole however the film just fails to impress and there's a lot of time spent here merely waiting for things to happen. The jokes are few and far between, the horror aspect is often incredibly predictable, and whilst I did enjoy the film a little in places; overall I'd have to say that I wasn't really that impressed by 'The Cottage'. There were elements that I quite liked about the film, not enough to ever keep me completely entertained however and frequently I found myself wondering when the film was going to come to its end.
In the original Paul Andrew Williams script, hostage Tracey was meant to be a 40 year old woman; in the film Tracey is played by Jennifer Ellison however, and according to Paul Andrew Williams himself, in order to get finance for the film he was asked to cast someone young for the part. I don't feel it would have made much difference regardless of who had have played the part of Tracey; there wasn't much to the film really, and although Jennifer Ellison was quite weak in her role - the script didn't really allow for any real depth of performance anyway.
The plot line is quite ropey, the jokes on the whole unfunny, and what I enjoyed most about the film was probably its brief moments of tension. Suspense was built well in parts, had me on the edge of my seat a little, really making me feel as though I was watching a 'real' horror movie. I feel that had the film trod a more horror based line then the film perhaps would have been more successful, the suspenseful horror parts were more enjoyable to watch than the comedy elements, and had this been the key focus of the film then 'The Cottage' could well have been a reasonable British horror film. As it turns out though, the film was never really too much of either, and whilst there were a few funny moments and some excellent elements of suspense; all in all there's a lot about this film not to like and many moments where the film just doesn't really work.
In terms of quality of cast I feel that Paul Andrew Williams did quite a good job with 'The Cottage'. I always enjoyed watching Reece Shearsmith in the League of Gentlemen, and it was quite nice to see Andy Serkis present here also, a man probably best known by most for having played Gollum in 'The Lord of the Rings' films. As for Jennifer Ellison though? Well, as Paul Andrew Williams wanted her role to be played by a 40 year old we'll ignore that one. The casting of 'The Cottage' wasn't at all the films problem, more the quality of the script and the general flow of the film.
'The Cottage' is certainly not one of the worst films I've ever seen, it had its positive aspects and there were times when I did quite enjoy what was going on on-screen. On the whole the film is not great, better than some I've seen though and watching the film was not a complete waste of time, just not an entirely enjoyable experience. Would I watch 'The Cottage' again? Well, quite frankly no, that's not to say I hated the film though, just more to the point that I found the film to be not very good.
Paul Andrew Williams is a decent director and 'The Cottage' is not a complete disaster, it has its merits and I know for a fact that there are some that do enjoy the film (it has a Rotten Tomatoes overall freshness percentage of 71% for instance); I'm not one of the films fans however, and stand by my point that I feel Williams would have had greater success had he made 'The Cottage' an all out horror film. 'The Cottage' has not put me off the future films of Paul Andrew Williams, merely removed my wish to ever watch this particular film again. 'The Cottage' has its fans, personally I don't rate the film but if you are a fan of the comedy horror genre then by all means obtain a copy of 'The Cottage' on rental and see what you make of this 2008 Paul Andrew Williams directed dark comedy horror.
The Cottage can currently be purchased from Amazon.co.uk at a price of £5.98.
Director: Paul Andrew Williams
Runtime: 91 mins
BBFC Rating: 18
Summary: 'The Cottage' is a pretty poor comedy horror film from director Paul Andrew Williams.