Boar – Australia, 2018

Boar is a 2018 Australian horror feature film written, co-produced and directed by Chris Sun (Charlie’s Farm). The Ozpix movie stars John Jarratt, Simone Buchanan, Melissa Tkautz, and Bill Moseley.

In the harsh, yet beautiful Australian outback lives a beast, an animal of staggering size, with a ruthless, driving need for blood and destruction. It cares for none, defends its territory with brutal force, and kills with a raw, animalistic savagery unlike any have seen before.

Believed to be nothing more than a myth, a legend brought to life by a drunken local, the beast ventures closer to civilisation, closer to life, and ultimately, closer to death. It’s brutal, it’s bloodthirsty, it’s boar…

Review:

Suffused with retro Ocker clichés and Carry On-style innuendo, Boar is not exactly a calling card for Aussie culture: “You’ve been drinkin’ like a f*ckin’ woman”, rambles Ken (John Jarrett) as he staggers around pissed. Although vague social satire is obviously the intention, subtlety is absent entirely. And whatever appeal may have been initially engendered by its supposedly down-to-earth characters soon dissipates. Hilariously,  everyone is seemingly a “Shiela” or a “dingo”.

The remainder of the movie is a Razorback rehash with attack scenes that are generally too darkly-lit to have any impact (even the movie’s posters are too dark!), plus brash bar banter and brawls. Away from the “pub”, hero Bernie (Nathan Jones) is presented as a loveable macho guy with a soft heart. Unfortunately, his miming to ‘Ice Ice Bay’ is perhaps Boar‘s low point. And what’s bemused Bill Moseley – a token yankee, yet still named Bruce – doing here? Nothing much except to bolster the movie’s appeal stateside.

The plot races ahead like the wild pigs that are barely on show, as if the audience knows what’s coming (clearly they do), and thus no build up, no tension. There isn’t anything particularly original in Boar and with characters we can’t empathise with, nothing to draw viewers in. There are many Australian genre movies worth watching, Boar isn’t one of them. And dammit, it’s left this viewer with Vanilla Ice in my head. That’s worse than any “wild f*ckin’ pig!”

Adrian J Smith, HORRORPEDIA

Other reviews:

” …a fun, atmospheric and highly entertaining creature-feature which proudly boasts endearing Aussie mannerisms while offering a brand of horror, which will appeal to audiences all over the world. It also serves as Chris Sun’s most accomplished film to date.” Fake Shemp

“The creature looks great, all gnashing tusks and rolling eyeballs. People you don’t expect to bite it die in ways you could not have predicted–and then there’s that scene where Bernie unsheathes his massive, professional-wrestler arms and punches the crap out of the monster. Boar is broad, silly, gleefully disgusting stuff that takes real pleasure in its excesses.” Walter Chaw, Film Freak Central

“The creature effects too are, on the whole, well-executed. The deaths are as silly as you would want from this type of film, and the boar manages to dispatch victims in a variety of devilish ways. Boar has a disjointed story and is slightly miscast; these decisions let down what is otherwise a camp, kitsch creature feature gloriously drenched in blood.” Kat Hughes, The Hollywood News

“Aside from giving its monster an oddly vampiric quality, the focus on night scenes, I expect was done for effects reasons, means there’s a lull during the second half. It also has a slight unfinished feel about it, with many deaths occurring off-screen, presumably likewise due to financial constraints. To be blunt, with a bigger budget, this could have been a better film, boasting more over the top gore and smarter kills.” David S. Smith, Horror Cult Films

“There’s no particular origin for the monster – who is mostly a big, not-terribly mobile practical effect – and it isn’t invested with the mystic, semi-supernatural air of classic Aussie beasts in Long Weekend or Rogue … but Sun doesn’t skimp on the splat, ruthlessly killing off much of the cast with tusk impalements and spilled innards […] It’s an ordinary little movie, sort of likeable, but it’d have to root around hard to get into any Top Five Killer Pig Movie lists.” The Kim Newman Web Site

“When the porcine menace is offscreen however, Boar is a bit of a (sorry!) bore. Sun fails to create any notable characters, with most of the cast essaying one-note stereotypes – the plucky heroine, the grieving mother, the coward, the horny girl etc. Only Jarratt and humongous bodybuilder Nathan Jones manage to stand out, the former with his movie star charm, the latter with his sheer physical size.” Eric Hillis, The Movie Waffler

Boar is great fun, but it’s not flawless by any means. I thought the acting and dialogue were sound overall, but some of the writing was not well thought through […] There are a few other little niggles too, but don’t let them stop you: Boar is an entertaining man-against-beast creature feature. It has no supernatural nonsense, a good cast and fabulous scenery.” Alice Field, Ready Steady Cut

“Despite that and some odd structural and pacing choices, the film moves briskly to a suitably tense final showdown. It also lets Jones step away from his usual hulking villain role and play a heroic character. He even gets to go toe to hoof with the boar in a fight as epic as any he had in the WWF.” Jim Morazzini, Voices from the Balcony

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Main cast and characters:

  • John Jarratt … Ken – StalkHer; Wolf Creek and sequels; Needle
  • Simone Buchanan … Debbie – Patrick: Evil Awakens
  • Melissa Tkautzb… Sasha
  • Bill Moseley … Bruce – The Mangled; Crepitus; Death House; The Devil’s Rejects; et al
  • Nathan Jones … Bernie – Mad Max: Fury Road
  • Hugh Sheridan … Robert
  • Roger Ward … Blue – Mad Max
  • Steve Bisley … Bob – Mad Max
  • Ernie Dingo … Ernie
  • Chris Haywood … Jack
  • Christie-Lee Britten … Ella
  • Chris Bridgewater … Ryan
  • Madeleine Kennedy … Hanna
  • Ricci Guarnaccio … Oscar
  • Trudi Ross … Wendy

Razorback – Australia, 1984

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