If you like sweating while watching your action thrillers, take a gander at Carnage Park and get a workout.
Plot: After botching an ill-conceived bank robbery in a desolate California town, two wannabe crooks flee the scene with a hostage and lead the local lawmen on a dangerous high-speed chase.
Review: In the mid 1970’s, two lowlife crooks rob a bank in a middle of nowhere California town, and for safety measures, they kidnap a bystander – a feisty young woman named Vivian (Ashley Bell from The Day and Sparks). After a shootout, one of the two crooks is killed, leaving the leader of the two – Scorpion Joe (James Landry Hebert) – alone to contend with the squirmy Vivian when they become stranded in the desolate hills. All of a sudden, Scorpion Joe is killed by sniper fire, and with Vivian handcuffed to the steering wheel, she’s helpless when the sniper comes close to inspect his damage. The killer is an unsettlingly off-kilter man named Wyatt Moss (played by Pat Healy who will scare the crap out of you), who owns all the land and hills in sight, and instead of helping Vivian, he chloroforms her and intends on doing who knows what with her … but due to her tenacity, she escapes, leading him on a harrowing chase through the hills, mines, and scary places hidden on Wyatt’s land. There’s a beam of hope when Sheriff Moss (played by Alan Ruck) comes calling on Wyatt, but when it’s revealed that he’s, in fact, Wyatt’s brother, Vivian’s hope of surviving the day and night are diminished. What will it take for her to make it out of Wyatt’s hellzone alive?
Startlingly intense and full of gonzo energy, Carnage Park is purported to be based on fact (but I can’t find evidence on that), and it carries with it a proud badge of being similar to Wolf Creek and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, but it revitalizes the genre with a punch to the kidneys. Ashley Bell, who has consistently proven that she’s a verifiable real-deal actress who gives her roles the extra mile in the physical department, plays the central heroine with every bit of her skill, and Pat Healy is chillingly frightening as her tormentor. If you like sweating while watching your action thrillers, take a gander at Carnage Park and get a workout. From director Luke Greenfield.