Scott Hardie | July 27, 2001
A few nights ago (I've been too busy to comment on it since), I watched "Ravenous," a 1999 movie about cannibals in the Sierra Nevadas in 1847. The viewing experience was enhanced by the coincidence of me eating barbecued meat for dinner at the same time.

"Ravenous" stars Guy Pearce as a cowardly soldier stationed at a northern Californian outpost as punishment. One snowy night, a stranger (Robert Carlyle) arrives at their camp, pallid and weary. He claims to be a survivor of a settling expedition that turned into cannibalism when its members holed up in a cave. When Carlyle escorts Pearce and the other soldiers back to the cave to see if there are any other survivors, the movie takes an interesting twist.

To those who haven't seen it: I suppose it's worth a rental, though it's not very good. It's the kind of movie where the filmmakers seemed to think they were creating a masterpiece, and didn't notice the flaws in their work. Pearce underacts as usual, and for once it's a problem. But some genuine creepiness, some very black humor, and a unique setting make the movie interesting anyway.

To those who have seen it: What were the composers thinking? The music was silly and whimsical just when it should have been foreboding and tense. You don't play a happy jig on a fiddle when there's a blood-crazed cannibal chasing the hero through the snow. Jesus. And was it just me or was that Martha a royal bitch? What did Boyd ever do to her?


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