Phase 4 Films // 2009 // 89 Minutes // Rated R
Reviewed by Judge Daniel Kelly (Retired) // October 8th, 2010
Terror of the hunt.
Outrage Born in Terror is just another cheaply made and unimaginative direct to DVD thriller. Starring the once respected Michael Madsen (Reservoir Dogs), the film is dull from start to finish, and riddled with more laughable clichés than you can shake a stick at. There are times when director Ace Cruz shows slight technical flair from behind the camera, but on the whole, this is a dogged and thoroughly unsatisfying slice of DTV nonsense.
The film follows a young woman named Christine (Katie Fountain, Monk) as she embarks upon selling a hunting lodge located deep in the woods. The lodge hasn't always been a place of solace and happiness for Christine, and for moral comfort she brings two friends along for the trip. However on arrival she finds an ex-military loon (Michael Madsen) hiding out in the property, alongside a group of equally dangerous cohorts. After barely managing to escape their clutches, Christine and her chums are forced to play a game of cat and mouse against the heavily armed madmen in the forested area.
Outrage has only a few slick camera tricks and stylistic flourishes in its favor; the rest of the movie is a mire of poor acting and dismal screenwriting. The young protagonists are played colorlessly, the screenplay failing to imbue any of the heroes with a shred of depth or even vibrancy. Audiences will probably be left routing for the bad guys, even if it's only due to Madsen turning in a hilariously overcooked turn as the chief baddie. Outrage also happens to be packed with stereotypes and clichés. The film's depiction of "country hicks" is nauseatingly bad; at times Outrage almost seems like a lampoon of Deliverance.
The plotting is bumbling and predictable, and Cruz's attempts to wring suspense out of the chase sequences just smack of directorial ineptitude. Outrage is a failure on almost every level, something compounded by its amateurish production design and the odd burst of atrocious CGI. The characters aren't engaging and thus it's impossible to care about their fates, leaving the movie to ramble on pointlessly for around 89 minutes. Usually that would be a pretty tight running time, but in the case of this crap it's much too long.
The DVD features some pretty ropey audio and video capability, although the latter is clear enough to confirm the project's lack of visual quality. The soundtrack for Outrage is faceless in the extreme, but the music does tend to drown out the dialogue rather uncomfortably in a few scenes. There are absolutely no extras on this disc, unless you happen to count a crumby trailer.
Guilty as all hell.
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Scales of Justice
Studio: Phase 4 Films
* Full Frame
* Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo (English)
Running Time: 89 Minutes
Release Year: 2009
MPAA Rating: Rated R