The Bone Snatcher

The Bone Snatcher

The Bone Snatcher (2003)

Shortly after arriving in the desert, a scientist is sent with a team to one of the outlying mines.  En route, they discover an abandoned vehicle belonging to a survey team and quickly discover two members of the team stripped to the bone.  Heading off after the third, they soon find he was another victim of a relentless horde of creatures which then set their sights on the new victims, who must find a way to stop a horror that is at once one creature and a swarm, capable of annihilating them all.

The setup is largely perfunctory.  The prospectors uncover a nameless beast (complete with the omnipresent “monster vision” which makes so many cheap horror films look extra cheap).  A scientist is dispatched for reasons which have nothing to do with the missing prospectors (and are never quite clear anyhow).  On his first trip into the desert, the team decides to skip their current assignment and venture off into the desert to solve the mystery despite being ill-equipped, completely uninformed about what is going on and clearly having another important task to complete.  Nonetheless, they conveniently oblige the beast – which seems to have had no real motivation to bother them in the first place – and get themselves killed.  The big reveal of the force at work is unsurprisingly disappointing, as is the team’s nonsensical solution in the final showdown – a showdown which really should have ended in tragedy before it began.

This is what happens when fairly talented filmmakers set out to make a movie without the addition of talented film writers.  The cinematography is good, the acting isn’t half bad, the location is starkly foreboding (which greatly enhances the sense of isolation) and the pacing and direction cover a multitude of sins.  The biggest of those sins is the lack of a script and a weak story.  The premise could have been interesting, but is used largely as window dressing for some well choreographed kills.  The characters are laughably one-dimensional, the dialog is at times stilted and at times overly loose…but never quite right.  The “twist” at the end is laughably transparent, makes no sense and is completely illogical.  As cheap monster flicks go, this one really isn’t that bad – but it’s another generic monster film which happens to be pretty well done; it simply has no meat on its bones.

 

Stars: 2.5/5

 

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