Review: THE WOODSMEN – A SLENDER VALLEY TALE (2018)
Something is wrong in Slender Valley. When residents start to go missing in the vast forests, Park Ranger Sherman, and Deputy Ranger Lewis take on the chore of leading search expeditions. But someone knows more than they are letting on and Slender Valley can’t keep its secret forever… or can it?
THE WOODSMEN is a twenty-minute short made by the folk at Five Year Plan and released free on YouTube. Free is always good. It’s even better when the film is good as well, and THE WOODSMEN is very good.
I’m not spoiling anything when I say that Bigfoot is once again involved, he’s right there on the poster. There is, however, a twist which I won’t spoil that’s very interesting and certainly leaves the door open to further tales from the valley.
The suspense is mixed with some humor though not of an intrusive kind. Most of it relates to the uber-nerdy Ranger Sherman (GianPaolo Lattanzio). There’s also some logic applied to the characters going into harm’s way for once. As Dan (Garret Harvey) says to Maddi (Kristen Wright-Howsam) “We won’t find them by sticking to the trails cause they didn’t”.
The effects are quite good and thankfully not CGI. Bigfoot is an effective suit that resembles the one used in ABOMINABLE, a film I have considerable love for. The gore is also all old school effects and delivers quite well. There is one effect I felt was underdone but that’s probably for dramatic effect so I can let it slide.
I wouldn’t have minded seeing a bit more lead up to the big guy’s arrival. It’s quite suspenseful and sets up the attack nicely. Hopefully, any sequel will run longer and give us a bit more of that. As well as more attacks and carnage. Let’s hope directors Victor and Jodi Cooper can use this as a springboard to a feature and give us just that.
Five Year Plan has made THE WOODSMEN – A SLENDER VALLEY TALE available for free on YouTube and it’s certainly worth the time spent watching it. You can keep up with Five Year Plan’s activities on their Facebook page.