What’s up! I’m Marlon, and this is Ulven Reviews: movies and series from all over the world.
Today let’s talk about the 2020 Polish movie “Nobody Sleeps in the Woods Tonight”, directed by Bartosz M. Kowalski.
Adrenalina is a camp in the woods for technology-addicted teenagers. There they’ll have some time to socialize face-to-face with other teenagers and be in contact with nature, far away from social media and such.
The large group of teenagers is separated into smaller groups of five campers and one adult leader.
The group we follow throughout the movie is led by Iza (played by Gabriela Muskala), with the teenagers:
Aniela (played by Wiktoria Gasiewska)
Bartek (played by Stanislaw Cywka)
Daniel (played by Sebastian Dela)
Julek (played by Michal Lupa)
and Zosia (played by Julia Wieniawa-Narkiewicz).
The group has a three-day hike further inside the woods, unaware of the disgusting threat lurking around them.
Nobody Sleeps in the Woods Tonight is a very traditional slasher. It’s not much more than that but is very successful at that. All the elements are there:
we have a group of teenagers, all of them with a specific stereotype;
the sex scene with some “tidies”;
violent villains that give us some very gruesome deaths…
The list goes on, and the Slasher bingo is filled.
Also, the film moves fast and is very fun to watch. And it’s much funnier than I expected. The movie doesn’t take itself too seriously.
I also really enjoyed the characters, at least those among the five teenagers. The other characters don’t have too much going on.
Anyway, even the teenagers in the beginning I thought would suck, they actually became very good characters, very likable characters.
Zosia is the most badass and is the protagonist. However, the one I liked the most was Julek, not by far, but by a decent margin.
Everybody thought he would underperform, and the group leader, Iza, said he would surprise everyone. And he really did surprise the group of teenagers, and the audience, because he was very nice.
He was not brave, but in his lack of bravery, he was actually right, he was avoiding the stupid thing. And, when pointing his arguments he was being really funny, which award him points with me.
I already said how the movie didn’t take itself too seriously, and that’s probably my favorite part of it. It doesn’t matter if it’s a horror movie, it’s a slasher, we want to have some fun, and we want to laugh. Laugh is good!
And don’t get me wrong, I love some melancholia as well, but everything has its own place, and I think the comedy found its place in this film to perfection.
Now let’s get back on track and talk about the performances.
The performances, in general, are okay, but my highlight is Julia (Wieniawa-Narkiewicz). I won’t say her full name again, I’m actually from Polish descent but that doesn’t mean I was born with a correct pronunciation.
Julia’s performance in this specific movie is average, like the rest of them. However, by seeing other performances by her that we realize that it was a performance concise-to-fit-the-character. To me this show she has an amazing range as an actress.
She is not just a social media personality, she is an actual good, very talented actress.
But she is also a social media star. I think she is the Polish personality with the most followers, only behind the Lewandowski couple (If I’m not mistaken, don’t quote me on that).
I would like also to give an honorable mention to Miroslaw Zbrojewicz, who plays a postman attacked by the villains. I’m used to seeing him in tough military roles, so this one was a change in the pattern.
Another positive point is the gorgeous cinematography. Amazing use of color and light, giving us some beautiful shots both a day…
as at night…
I like the camera movement as well. It has moments of simplicity and conciseness, but it also has moments of euphoria, reflecting the moment in which the film is in.
A point regarding the cinematography that I think is important to touch, is that the cinematography is not at all generic. We so often see horror movies with generic cinematography that is pleasant to see a movie that actually showed some effort to do things a little outside the box.
It’s nothing crazy, it’s nothing unseen. For example, I like that May the Devil Take You (one and two), more than I like Nobody Sleeps in the Woods Tonight regarding camera movement, but at least it’s outside the old formula.
Now, let’s get back to 2004. The movie “The Machinist” is released, starring Christian bale, and Jennifer Jason Leigh. This movie was actually the first time I ever saw Jennifer Jason Leigh.
It was also the first time I heard the instrument Theremin, present in the score of the movie. It became one of my favorite instruments, and not only because it was invented in the Soviet Union. It’s inexplicably eerie and beautiful. It can be phantasmagoric, but it can also sound alien, like in the movie The Day The Earth Stood Still of 1951. Another amazing score, I suggest you look for it.
The score of Nobody Sleeps in the Woods Tonight uses Theremin, and is one of the best uses I have ever heard, possibly even better than the ones I mentioned before. It’s really great.
Nobody Sleeps in the Woods Tonight was a very fun experience. It’s not by any means original, or some masterpiece of moviemaking, but it definitely has some good technical qualities and is very entertaining. So, I’ll give Nobody Sleeps in the Woods Tonight 7 Moons!
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Thanks for watching see you in the next video.