Savages Crossing (2011) starring Chris Haywood, Sacha Horler, Charlie Jarratt, John Jarratt directed by Kevin James Dobson Movie Review

Savages Crossing (2011)   2/52/52/52/52/5

John Jarratt in Savages Crossing (2011)

A Flood Dud

When Sue (Angela Punch McGregor) hears that her estranged, violent husband Phil (John Jarratt) has been released from prison and is back in town she immediately grabs what she needs and with her protective son Damien (Charlie Jarratt) hit the road to go and stay with a relative. But along the way a torrential storm hits causing floods and they are forced to take shelter at a roadhouse run by Kate (Jessica Napier). They are not the only ones who end up taking shelter there as travellers Shae (Sacha Horler) and Mickey (Rebecca Smart) have pulled up there to get out of the rain whilst truck driver Mory (Craig McLachlan) is on his way back. But the smart Phil has works out where Sue was running to and ends up at the same roadhouse after being rescued from a flooded river by Mory. But there is someone else making their way to the roadhouse through the floods.

My initial thoughts when I read a synopsis for "Savages Crossing" was that with a flood and a roadhouse it sounded a bit like identity. But within minutes of "Savages Crossing" starting it was clear that "Savages Crossing" was no "Identity" and in fact it wasn't going to be much of anything as we had poor dialogue and actors struggling to make it work. It was then as I looked at the credits that I saw it was written by John Jarratt and his wife Cody Jarrett whilst starring John Jarratt and Charlie Jarratt who going on their roles in the movie I assume is father and son. And that is telling of "Savages Crossing" as it feels like a vanity project with too many fingers from the same family involved with not enough outside input to say when things are not right.

What it means is that "Savages Crossing" is a movie with an idea, not much of an original idea with it surrounding people stuck at a roadhouse on a stormy night but still an idea with potential. But due to the mind numbing nature of the dialogue and the less than consistent delivery it ends up weak. Ironically the direction itself is not weak and Kevin James Dobson along with his crew create some nice imagery with the use of the rain and lighting to silhouette bodies.

What this all boils down to is that "Savages Crossing" ends up weak because the storyline, the dialogue and the acting isn't good enough. But then once you stop hoping for it to get good you occasionally get treated to some nice cinematography.