Directed by Alex Chandon.
Starring Jo Hartley, Seamus O’Neill, James Doherty, James Burrows, Neil Leiper, Chris Waller and Nadine Rose Mulkerrin.
A group of young urban offenders and their care workers embark on a community service weekend in a remote Yorkshire village. Their presence upsets the villagers and a conflict soon appears inevitable…
A modern classic of British television, The League of Gentlemen set an incredibly high standard for those venturing forth into the decidedly tricksy world of horror/comedy. In the TV series at least (not so much the disappointing film), the league showed what could be possible with great performances, a terrific script and sticky taped upturned noses.
I only mention this wonderful show here because the startlingly juvenile Inbred has clearly attempted to borrow something of its verve and style. It fails. Miserably.
As influences go, it is a good one to have and something to strive for. Northern accents, gore, splatter and a landlord who spends the entirety of the second half in blackface makeup (à la LOG psychopath Papa Lazarou) clearly show where the creators wanted to go.
However, Inbred suffers from below par writing, weak jokes and a central ‘idea’ that just doesn’t work (especially not as a feature). At times, it resembles little more than a well financed student film – loaded with cheap gags and non-scares.
Set in the fictional Yorkshire village of Mortlake, the film does not do anything much for the north south divide. The kids and their carers (two passable performances from Jo Hartley and James Doherty, who capture some of the ageing hippie do-gooder intentions of clichéd care workers), stick out like a stuck up nose in local pub ‘The Dirty Hole’, where the sign outside reads ‘not food here.’
Coming from the uninspiring southern commuter town of Milton Keynes, the kids and their carers have enough on their plates without being terrorized by local types and put on their plates. Not long after admiring the views and scenery (“you don’t get light like this in Milton Keynes”, says the group leader) the team discover what is really in the pub’s pork scratchings and any attempt at originality or smartness goes out the window (with the hammers).
The one thing that the film does very well is presenting most of the group as so thoroughly unlikeable that when the (totally unsurprising) first death does come you wish it had happened earlier. After that point, the film grinds to a half pace and it becomes merely uninteresting and slightly embarrassing. In truth, the only really offensive thing about this film is how poor it was….
The extras for DVD & Blu-ray include director’s diary, making of, clips, highlights and deleted scenes.
Flickering Myth Rating – Film: ★ / Movie: ★ ★
Robert W Monk is a freelance journalist and film writer.