Willow Creek [Blu-Ray]
Director: Bobcat Goldthwait
Cast: Bryce Johnson, Alexie Gilmore
Release Date: Now Available on Blu-Ray & DVD
A Review By: Kevin Lovell
Film Rating: 8/10
Disc Rating: 9/10
Jim and his girlfriend Kelly are visiting the infamous Willow Creek, the alleged home of the original Bigfoot legend – the tale of huge ape like creatures that roam the forests of North America. It was there that in 1967, the legendary beast was captured on film and has terrified and mystified generations since. Keen to explore more than 50 years of truth, folklore, misidentifications and hoaxes, Kelly goes along for the ride to keep Jim happy, whilst he is determined to prove the story is real by capturing the beast on camera. Deep in the dark and silent woods, isolated and hours from human contact, neither Kelly or Jim are prepared for what is hidden between the trees, and what happens when the cameras start rolling…
‘Willow Creek’ tells the story of a young couple off on a quest for the truth about Bigfoot. Jim has been obsessed his whole life, an avid believer and enthusiast of Bigfoot/Sasquatch and is finally realizing his dream of going out to the original film site in which the first ever legit footage of the beast was said to be filmed, as well as documenting the entire trip. His girlfriend Kelly on the other hand isn’t a believer, but has agreed to join him on his adventure and help him document the experience nonetheless. Will they realize it’s nothing more than a myth and go back empty handed, or will they discover more than they had bargained for?
Bobcat Goldthwait wrote and directed ‘Willow Creek’ and did a pretty fantastic job on both ends. I’m personally a huge fan of his last two writing and directing efforts (World’s Greatest Dad & God Bless America) as well and it’s great seeing him continue to have the opportunity to show what he can do behind the camera, because he really is a very unique and talented filmmaker and at this point I’ll watch anything he does without hesitation. The two leads are portrayed by Bryce Johnson and Alexie Gilmore, both of whom have worked with Bobcat behind the camera before and they both do a pretty impressive job completely carrying ‘Willow Creek’ for pretty much the entirety of the film.
I would definitely recommend checking out ‘Willow Creek’ especially to the horror fans and those like myself who are fans of Bobcat Goldthwait’s other outings as writer and director. He delivers an intense and terrifying nail biter this time around that really brings us back to the basics of found footage at its finest. The level of intensity is impressive, managing to keep the viewer absolutely terrified and enthralled through lengthy sequences, just by mere dialogue and sound effects and it’s certainly a film well worth checking out.
The Blu-Ray release of ‘Willow Creek’ features a full 1080p High Definition presentation utilizing the film’s original 1.78:1 Aspect Ratio. The video presentation looks pretty great here, perfectly representing the clearly intentional faults as a result of the found footage approach, such as pops and excessive grain in some sequences, while other moments are sharp, detailed and look fantastic. It’s always great to see the HD master not over polish what was intended to be there and the way this Blu-Ray release adequately handles moving between the takes is impressive.
The Blu-Ray release features a lossless 5.1 channel DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack. As a whole this lossless multichannel soundtrack sounds good and works perfectly with the found footage aspect, not overplaying the surrounding noises and effects, but not afraid to use them either. It benefits most from taking advantage of noises around the characters moving and spreading little clicks or noises from one channel to another to really help you feel the tension and fear of these two.
The Blu-Ray release of ‘Willow Creek’ also includes a few pretty fun and informative extras. Included on the release is a feature length Audio Commentary track with Writer/Director Bobcat Goldthwait and Stars Alexie Gilmore and Bryce Johnson. Also included is a four minute deleted scene which features another interview with an individual in the town; ‘Bryce Johnson’s The Making of Willow Creek’ featurette which provides an entertaining behind the scenes look at the making of the movie; and the Theatrical Trailer.
*Please note that the above images are taken from the Blu-Ray and resized. They additionally will suffer quality loss as a result of .jpg compression. Larger versions of each image can be viewed by clicking on the image. All images and content included on this Blu-Ray release are the property of their respective owners.