Welcome to the wildest part of the year where we celebrate flicks that take place out in nature — usually in the woods. Communing is optional, yet highly encouraged.
There will be special guest appearances by big hairy monsters, the gratuitous use of outdoor implements for things that they’re not normally intended and leaves a’falling.
The rules that apply to a woods flick, as set forth by the Drive-In Code are the following:
- There has to be a shot of just trees to show that we are, in fact, in the woods.
- There has to be no phone service.
- There has to be cricket sound effects.
- There has to be a campfire scene.
So, according to the rules, for it to be a proper woods flick and eligible for two or more stars, the elements above need to be present.
The first flick we’re going to look at this month is “Lost Gully Road,” an Australian production from 2017. Some woman named Cassie sends Lucy (Adele Perovic) out to the boonies in Australia. They might be sisters. Or co-workers. Or sisters who treat one another like co-workers. I can’t tell. The audience can, however, tell that it’s Australia because the steering wheel’s on the wrong side of the car.
Lucy is hiding from a possessive ex and so Cassie tells Lucy that she can’t use her personal phone in absolutely every phone conversation they have. This makes Lucy, a morose hoodie chick with a nose ring, even more sullen while she stays at a cabin in the woods that her sister rented for a week.
The old lady who’s renting the house out to Lucy leaves her a basket with some wine and crackers, but there’s not much there for Lucy to do since there’s no TV. Instead, she looks at the 7 or 8 books that were left on the shelf and finds some vintage porn magazines, reads an atlas, walks out in the woods, showers and brushes her teeth frequently.
There’s kind of a Little Red Riding Hood allegory going on in this flick by director/co-writer Donna McRae — you can tell by Lucy’s wardrobe, but rather than a big bad wolf coming to get her as she skips along the wooden path, it’s a really kinky spirit that eavesdrops on her while she’s showering and uses bedsheets for things they’re normally not used for.
Best Service in the Area: The local shopkeeper (John Brumpton — the veteran Australian character actor who got his whangdoodle shredded by a jar lid hidden in a woman’s groceries in Storm Warning) is pretty accommodating, even though you think he’s gonna be a creep — “I do home deliveries. Doesn’t matter how late, Just give me a call.”
Best Normal Hospitality: The old lady homeowner who leaves the cheese-and-wine basket and kind of dismisses the weird stuff that’s happening by telling Lucy that the house simply takes care of itself.
Best Displays of Paranormal Hospitality: A table moves itself, a fire starts itself, a table fixes itself and the house leaves flowers for its guest.
Best Display of Paranormal Kinkiness: When the ghost goes all S&M and starts whipping Lucy.
Second-best Display of Paranormal Kinkiness: The ghost might have hidden a book about sadism in the closet, so she shouldn’t have been so surprised about the whipping after all.
Two stars. Has just two of the five elements of a woods flick and the blood count was, really, really low (she had her knuckles cracked between a falling window and the sill).