Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Siren (2010)

Directed by Andrew Hull 
Starring Eoin Macken, Anna Skellern, Anthony Jabre, Tereza Srbova
Rated R

“I think I figured it out. She hypnotized us!”

I haven't met too many folks that are fans of the taut, unsettling parking lot psycho flick P2,but it's one of my favorite anti-Xmas epics. Writer/director Hull wrote that one. I'm also sucker for peril-at-sea flicks. I think this is because the last thing I'd do is get on a boat and bob around in the ocean. Fuck that. It's full of sharks. I'm also a big fan of lady/monster flicks. Species! Thusly, it was inevitable that I would see Siren, a film that neatly merges both genres in one pulpy, low-budget package.

Ken (Eoin Macken – what the fuck man, Eoin?), a douchebaggy, constantly horny American neo-rapist, his gorgeous, put-upon, British girlfriend Rachel (Aussie actress Anna  Skellern, from The Descent 2), and her equally British (and also sorta douchebaggy) ex-boyfriend Marco (Anthony Jabre) all meet up in Greece and rent a boat for a weekend excursion to the Greek Isles. Specifically, they're going to sail around the island where the mythical “siren” was fond of luring sailors to their deaths. What could go wrong?

Even before they get on the boat, Rachel keeps seeing a mysterious hot blonde who pops up and vanishes whenever she's alone. But Rach is pretty on the edge anyway, what with the aggro-roleplaying fuck sessions Ken's always dragging her into, so who knows?

Anyway, they're only out for a couple hours when Ken abandons his post to have punishing sex with Rachel, leaving Marco to helm the ship. Marco sees a distress signal on an island and crashes into the beach. They find a panicked sailor who freaks out and accidentally (or maybe purposely) kills himself, and that very hot blonde Rachel's been hallucinating for the past couple days.

Her name is Silka (Tereza Srbova), and she's a weirdo. However, she's good looking enough to overlook her quirks. She doesn't say much more than “Help me”, so they figure she's a stranded tourist, and make it their mission to bring her back to shore. First though, they wander around the island, get drunk, play charades, have a sing-along, allow the willowy blonde to plant seeds of conspiracy in everyone's mind, have a nude swim, and then start hallucinating wildly about massacring each other. As you do.

It was definitely a weird day. The next morning, Ken decides it's time they all got off this screwy island, but when he announces this, Silka laughs at him and turns green and tells him he's going to die. Well, we all are, someday, Silka.

She means today, though. The gang panics and makes a run for it, when they discovers lots of smashed-up boats and a pit full of corpses! Well, you don't really see either – there's no budget for corpses or shipwrecks – but we know, man. We know.

Murder and  mayhem ensues until the girls are left. And so, they battle to the death...and possibly beyond. Well, first they make-out a little, and then they battle.

Ok, so you can guess the cornball “twist” ending in the first ten-minutes (after a pretty effective fake-out prologue). Also, Hull never commits to either sweat-soaked dread or sexed-up camp, and the film really needs one or the other. But I still had a pretty swell time watching Siren. It's reasonably unique, looks great, and the acting is a notch above what you'd expect. More importantly, It's got hot girls acting weird, hot girls swimming naked, and hot girls making out. And I'm a pretty simple guy.

PS director Andrew Hull had a bicycling accident and died shortly after wrapping Siren in 2010. RIP, sir. I liked the cut of your jib.

- Ken McIntyre 

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