Three British teens set on filming a unique Big Brother audition reel get more than they bargained for in The Tapes, directed by Lee Alliston and Scott Bates.
The start of The Tapes tell us that three friends have come to sticky ends at the hands of some sort of cult. We’re given interview clips from some of the friends and family members of our protagonists and we’re told that the families have given consent for ‘The Tapes’ to be shown.
Gemma (Natasha Sparkes) has roped in her not-so-bright boyfriend Danny (Jason Maza- Shifty, Rise of the Foot Soldiers) and his film student friend Nathan (Arnold Oceng- My Brother the Devil, Adulthood) to help her film a showreel to send into the Big Brother UK in hopes for an audition. Filming becomes complicated due to weather conditions, Gemma’s complete failure to grasp the concept of being on cue, Danny’s incessant larking about, and Nathan’s increasing frustration with both of them. So the trio end up taking refuge in a local pub.
They find out from one of the barmaids that the landlord is well known as a “swinger” and hosts parties on his nearby farm. Sensing a money making opportunity Danny persuades the group to take a trip down to the farm to catch some footage for Gemma’s tape.
Heading down the next day and ready for some action the trio seem undeterred by the large and eerie derelict farm, discarded tarot cards, lone lit candle and the makings of an S&M dungeon, and stick around to try and find some saucy action. They do get some group action but not the kind they were hoping for.
The characters are loveable idiots but The Tapes chugs along at a slow pace and the suspense and tension becomes short lived as we spend 60 minutes watching the trio mess around on a farm. When things pick up and the mystery is revealed, unfortunately it’s all too little too late.
The Tapes has almost a complete lack of either gore or scares rendering it slightly pointless, but the script was so nearly there that I really wanted it to be good. Less is not always more. Innit.
WICKED RATING: 2.5/10 [usr 2.5]
Title: The Tapes
Director(s): Lee Alliston, Scott Bates
Writer(s): Scott Bates
Stars: Jason Maza, Arnold Oceng, Nathasha Sparkes
Studio/ Production Co: Darkside Pictures, Pure Film Productions
Budget: $100,000 (estimated)
Sub-Genre: Found Footage, Cult