C.A. Cooper’s debut horror feature concerns three friends who find themselves locked in a confined space and forced to endure unimaginable horrors. Which means that moviegoers who make the unfortunate choice of seeing The Snare will have much to relate to.
This minimalist indie horror exercise doesn’t feature much of a plot. The central characters are Alice (Eaoifa Forward), suffering from emotional disturbance after being sexually abused by her father for many years; her best friend Lizzy (Rachel Warren); and Lizzy’s scuzzy boyfriend Carl (Dan Paton). For reasons that are never made clear, the trio decides to spend a drunken, off-season weekend together in an apartment in a high-rise building by the sea.
You’ll appreciate the characters’ travails, but not in a good way.
So far, so good, until the elevator stops working, the doors become locked and they find themselves trapped in the apartment without food and water. As the days go on and conditions worsen, they begin turning on each other. Alice also suffers horrific visions that may either be a sign of her disintegrating psyche or evidence that they’re being beset by malevolent supernatural forces. Either way, none of it is particularly interesting.
The writer-director’s determination to shock manifests itself in shots of maggots on rotting food; plot elements including incest and rape; and, as the icing on the cake, significant attention paid to excrement. Not that there’s anything terribly wrong with all this, mind you, at least when it comes to gross-out horror movies. The real crime, rather, is how utterly boring it all is.
Actually, those wanting real scares should check out the trivia section on the film’s IMDb page. Usually filled with mildly interesting tidbits, this one describes a litany of sadistic abuses perpetrated in the course of the film’s making. They include making the actors put spiders in their mouths; smell rotten food; being choked for real on camera; and getting locked together for hours in a small room with no food, water or means of communication. Maybe it’s all part of a clever publicity concept. But if any of the revelations are true, the sad thing is that none of the performers’ travails was worth it.
Production: Bohemian Pictures
Distributor: Uncork’d Entertainment
Cast: Eaoifa Forward, Rachel Warren, Dan Paton
Director/screenwriter/producer: C.A. Cooper
Director of photography: Tom Butler
Production designer: Anna Drizen
Editor: Jack Hennigan
Composer: Tom Johnson
Not rated, 92 minutes