The Bottom Line
- Great acting
- Hilarious dialogue
- Well-written characters
- Nice gore
- Jennifer Ellison's cleavage
- Could've had more back story on the killer
- "Generic horror" DVD cover art makes it look run-of-the-mill and humorless.
- Jennifer Ellison's cleavage doesn't have a major speaking part.
- Starring Andy Serkis, Reece Shearsmith, Steven O'Donnell, Jennifer Ellison
- Directed by Paul Andrew Williams
- Rated NR
- DVD Release Date: May 13, 2008
Guide Review - 'The Cottage' DVD Review
Europe has been a fount of horror comedies in the past few years, from England's Shaun of the Dead to Ireland's Boy Eats Girl, Germany's Night of the Living Dorks and the Czech Republic's Choking Hazard. Unlike those films, however, Britain's The Cottage isn't a zombie comedy ("zom com") but is rather a slasher comedy ("slash com"?) along the lines of the American film Hatchet.
The movie stars Andy Serkis (Gollum from the Lord of the Rings trilogy) as David, a nightclub worker who hatches a scheme with his bumbling brother Peter (Shearsmith) to kidnap Tracey (Ellison), the daughter of the gangster who owns the club. Accompanying them is the even more bumbling Andrew (Steve O'Donnell), Tracey's brother, who's so incompetent that he buys a ski mask without a face.
The gangster suspects that Andrew is involved and has a pair of hit men follow him to the secluded cottage where Tracey is being held. More threatening to the wannabe criminals' plans, though, is the fact that "those parts" are haunted by a deformed, homicidal farmer who'll kill anyone within a two-mile radius. And so he does.
The Cottage is one of the rare horror movies that's entertaining even before the horror elements begin. And wildly so. The quirky characters, from moth-phobic Peter to foul-mouthed Tracey, are vibrant and well-written, and the dialogue is smart and conversational (akin to Hatchet) with humor that arises from the spirited personal interactions. The killer appears for only the last 30 minutes or so of the film, but you don't really mind because the wonderful comedic acting carries the moments of inactivity.
When the maniac does finally show up, there's a campy, over-the-top level of gore that's sort of like watching Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Sitcom.
Special features include deleted scenes, outtakes and storyboards.