Reviewed by Uncle Creepy
Starring Clovis Cornillac, Vimala Pons, Zohar Wexler, Sifan Shao
Directed by Franck Vestiel
Distributed by Magnolia Home Entertainment
Ever since the release of the sci-fi phenomenon known as Cube, filmmakers have been revisiting the formula of people waking up in strange surroundings only to find that something sinister is afoot time and time again, with little to moderate success. This latest French entry into that kind of plot, Franck Vestiel’s Eden Log, does an admirable job of exploring such circumstances. The only problem? It does it at a snail’s pace. Hell, maybe even slower.
When our hero (Cornillac) wakes up inside of a dark and damp cave with no memory of who he is or how he got there, we immediately know something is very wrong. Not just because of the fact that this dude is suffering from amnesia or that he’s in a friggin’ cave for god’s sake (honestly — who wakes up in a cave under good circumstances?), but because there’s a dead body right beside him. Nope. Never good. Once aware of his surroundings, he immediately starts making his way through a labyrinth of rooms and tunnels as a means to get to the surface. That task won’t be simple, though, as along the way he runs into various obstacles looking to thwart his escape — most notably mutant creatures.
The who, what, where, when, and why of Eden Log are all revealed to us at the same time they are revealed to our protagonist, and the film does come to a quite satisfactory ending, but the time it takes to get there is for the most part tedious. In fact, I’d hazard to say that some will find Eden Log on the dull side of the fence, and admittedly at various points throughout the movie I’d be inclined to agree with them. Yet, for all of its shortcomings, when it comes time for the heat to be turned up, it does so, and you’re snapped right back into the movie.
Now let’s talk special features … or should I say lack thereof? According to the box and even the DVD menus, there is one, but you know what it is? The ability to watch the movie with its original French audio track with English subtitles. Really? Come on, guys! Isn’t that reaching just a bit? I think so, and as a result this package will get no marks from me in the supplemental department. Especially when the import DVD is sporting behind-the-scenes featurettes and more.
If you’re looking for some headsy slow-burn fun, Eden Log will more than fit the bill. Though not as smart as it likes to think it is, at the end of the day you’ll feel pretty satisfied. Everyone else looking for action will need to go elsewhere for their sci-fi/horror fix.
3 out of 5
0 out of 5
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