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Review: KILLERS WITHIN (2018)

Does the name David Icke ring a bell to you? If it’s as anything other than a former soccer player or broadcaster, then this film may be for you. For those who have no idea what I’m talking about, Mr. Icke has spent years peddling the theory that the world is ruled by shape-shifting, interdimensional lizard people. In KILLERS WITHIN writer/directors, Paul Bushe and Brian O’Neill take this idea, adds the Russian mob and runs with it.

Five years ago, policeman Rick Doyle (Jeff Doyle) helped put some Russian gangsters away. Well now they’re out, and their first action is to beat up his now ex-wife Amanda (Sue Walsh) and kidnap their son and hold him for ransom.

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Desperate to raise the money, they get Amanda’s brother Neville (Patrick Murphy) to help them stage a home invasion at the residence of his boss, bank manager Philip (Andrew Murray). Two of the gang take Phillip to the bank to get the money, while the rest remain to hold his family hostage. When Neville promptly turns up dead, it’s obvious things aren’t what they seem.

Filmed in Springfield Castle and Country House Killruddery, the events take place in a large and elegant setting that makes a nice change from the usual abandoned building or cabin in the woods. And the size of the mansion raises the ante considerably, one of the creatures could be anywhere.

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The other major twist KILLERS WITHIN gives us is making the home invaders sympathetic. They’re not motivated by simple greed or out to hurt anyone. It’s not the usual case where bad people meet worse ones. You can sympathize with them as things go from bad to worse to deadly. It also plays into the class war themes that go with these kinds of conspiracy theories. The rich elites, literally feeding on the lower classes. This is among the most explicit uses of these themes since SOCIETY.

Of course, KILLERS WITHIN was made to be an entertaining slice of horror and action, not a political manifesto. And it certainly succeeds as that. There’s a good deal of suspense and well shot action scenes. There isn’t a lot of actual gore, but what there is certainly is well done, as are the lizard people costumes.

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KILLERS WITHIN has played festivals in its native Ireland and England and will be playing the 44th Boston SciFi Film Festival on February 9th. You can check for other screenings on the film’s Facebook page.

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