Rewind review

Some of my favorite things imported from Ireland include Guinness, Jack Russell terriers and Irish soda bread. You can now add ambitious indie flick Rewind to that list. While not a blood-and-guts movie normally associated with this site, Rewind is a suspense thriller that will make you wonder when the pace will pick up…..and soon afterwards when it will end. Superb acting, coupled with an excellent screenplay, made sure I was not regretting the decision to stray from the horror genre and spread my cinematic wings.

Rewind is the story of Karen, played brilliantly by the star of British sitcom “Threesome”, Amy Huberman. Karen is a mother, living a fairy tale life with her perfect boyfriend and young daughter. Her life is turned upside down with the mysterious re-appearance of ex-boyfriend Karl (Allen Leech). Leech should be recognizable to folks on this side of the pond, having a role in Showtime’s “The Tudors”, as well as the enigmatically-popular “Downton Abbey.” Karl pops up with alarming frequency since their initial encounter, and weasels his way into her family’s home under false pretenses. It’s obvious Karl represents a past history that Karen has spent years running from, and he insists that she needs to help him tie up some loose ends for everyone’s sake. As we learn more about their felonious history, and the permanent damage they’ve caused, Karen must make a fateful decision to continue living her perfect life…..or revisit the past she thought she left behind in order to protect her family.

There were many reasons for me to not like this movie going in, but by the time the end credits rolled I couldn’t think of a single one. Initial impressions are huge, and before I pressed play on the dvd player I was anticipating a generic story filled with cringe-worthy performances and a conspicuous lack of horror elements. While the gore is still lacking (this is, afterall, a thriller with no supernatural element), the story will draw you in as you find yourself rooting for the underdog Karen, being manipulated by this shady character that seemingly has her at his will. By the time we see Karl sitting cozily in Karen’s home, casually conversing with her boyfriend as he lies about being her cousin, we can sense that this guy is the classic villain. Karen’s worst fear, that her new family would eventually uncover her horrible past, forces her to team up with her ex in a last desperate attempt to suppress their dark secret forever. Seriously….I can’t reveal many of the essential plot points without revealing too much. But rest assured, she learns more about this guy than she ever thought possible, including what he’s capable of to get what he wants. The explosive climax certainly provides a sense of finality, but it also includes an element of doubt that others, including equally thrilling film Unfaithful, also possess. And what needs to be said about the gloomy locale? It sets the tone terrifically. Of course, the perpetually-overcast skies of the UK gets the assist on that one.

Following in the footsteps of movies such as Snatch and Trainspotting, other entertaining imports from the British Isles, Rewind deserves a look here in the states. It has all of the classic elements of suspense, and more importantly redemption, and director PJ Dillon deserves some high praise. You can’t run from your past, especially if loose ends still linger. Rewind should be well-received by movie-goers in the states, and I’m hoping this film receives some positive recognition here in due time. I’d definitely recommend a viewing.

Sean McLaughlin on Twitter
Sean McLaughlin
Staff Writer at Horror News Network
Sean McLaughlin has been writing for Horror News Network since 2012. Catch up with him on Twitter at @Makasupa and read his in-depth bio on our About Us page.
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