Film Monthly Home
Archives
Wayne Case
Interviews
Steve Anderson
The Rant
Short Takes (Archived)
Small Screen Monthly
Behind the Scenes
New on DVD
The Indies
Horror
Film Noir
Coming Soon
Now Playing
Television
Books on Film
What's Hot at the Movies This Week
Interviews TV

Trackman

Directed by Igor Shavlak

Written by Valery Krechetov

Starring Svetlana Metkina, Dmitry Orlov

Produced by Valery Krechetov

Not Rated

81 mins

**

I’m always at least kind of interested to get my hands on foreign horror. And that Ghost House thought it worth including in their Ghost House Underground collection makes it doubly worth note.

Ghost House Underground, so far, has not been a huge disappointment. Oh, sure, there are no big standout titles yet, and frankly, Brotherhood of Blood was not my first choice for fun Friday night viewing, but then I personally have a problem with vampire movies anyway, especially those that act like they’re just huge LARPs and everyone wants to play freaking Clan Ventrue.

But Trackman… Now…that’s a different matter. First, it’s Russian. Not a whole lot of movies come out of the former Evil Empire these days, so each one is sort of a red-letter day all by itself. Especially when you consider other Russian fare like Night Watch and Day Watch.

And what they’ll be putting up is would be at least marginally interesting for an American release, so double bonus kudos to the Russians on this one. It’s basically your standard hack-and-slash sort of affair, with a bunch of bank robbers and their hostages plunging into the dark of an abandoned subway system (who knew Russia had subways?) and running afoul of a lunatic who kills pretty much anyone he comes across. So you’ve got lots of dark and claustrophobic action going on in here, and that’s seldom not a bad thing.

There will be those that say that Trackman is a bit on the repetitive side, and I can’t blame them. You start seeing the same walls and the same shadows and the dark and such moving around for a while and it gets to looking familiar. Maybe too familiar. But that’s really an issue of personal preference; I don’t have much of a problem with seeing a lot of the same scenery as long as something interesting’s going on in that scenery. Trackman does have quite a bit of that.

I debated telling you about this part because, frankly, it’s a pretty large part of the plot, but knowing what I know about this sort of thing you might be pretty upset if I don’t tell you. This serial killer? He’s got a thing for eyes. As in, he’ll be removing them. Messily. Frequently. I happen to be pretty squeamish when it comes to the eyes, and I know I’m not alone in that, so if you’ve got a thing about eye gouging like I do, well, you may want to stay away from Trackman.

The ending will actually manage to bring things full circle in a surprisingly cogent fashion, and even will go so far as to twist just a bit. Oh, and stick around during the credits for some creepy kids’ drawings that will even manage to give a bit of insight on the whole “eyes” thing. Bonus points for that.

The special features include audio options, English and Spanish subtitles, and trailers for Saw V, Punisher: War Zone, Trackman, Dance of the Dead, No Man’s Land: Rise of the Reeker, The Substitute, Brotherhood of Blood, Dark Floors, The Last House in the Woods and Room 205.

All in all, I’m fairly satisfied with Trackman. It’s certainly not the best thing I’ve seen lately, nor is it ever going to be a contender for a place on any of my best-of-ever lists. But it should prove to be at least a half-decent rental for the night, and you can’t ask a whole lot more out of a longshot import title.

Steve Anderson is a film critic who collects action figures so he can dress them up as his favorite horror villains. He lives somewhere in the United States.


Got a problem? E-mail us at filmmonthly@gmail.com