Dir: Larry Fessenden
Starring: Erik Per Sullivan, Patricia Clarkson, Jake Weber, John Speredakos

Fessenden pulls a fairly good con-trick, taking little in the way of actual material, but using it to build an effective sense of menace and unease. Miles (Sullivan) and his parents go for a quiet weekend in the country, only to encounter disturbing and disturbed redneck Otis (Speredakos, who deserves much credit for avoiding the obvious). It's pretty much downhill from there for everyone. Inspired by a story about a vengeful Indian spirit told to the director (who is, as you can from the picture on the right, the spitting image of Jack Nicholson) by his first-grade teacher, the film frequently takes steps in an interesting direction, before deciding to go somewhere else, which makes for frustrating yet compelling viewing. Sullivan is entirely bearable - and from someone with a very low tolerance for child actors, that's praise indeed! There is, however, not much payoff, and Fessenden might have been better off leaving the Wendigo entirely unseen, especially given his otherwise admirable sense of visual style. It seems to be largely a bunch of wind-blown sticks, which doesn't quite strike terror into my heart. Frankly, Otis alone is more than enough reason to justify precisely why our next holiday will definitely not be in the woods.


Jack Nic...sorry, Larry Fessenden
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