LSJTD: Eden Lake (2008)
Updated: Dec 21, 2022
Once a month, Kelly dares Jessica to watch a film surrounding the monthly theme. These challenges are meant to scare, or unsettle, Jessica, and broaden her horror horizons.
It's folk horror month (Jess' favorite) and it's time to shake things up! Eden Lake (2008) -- which I own and adore! -- blends "hoodie horror" with folk horror in an intense spiral into the world of depraved kids. Why is this considered folk horror? Check out an excellent article by Dawn Keetley of Horror Homeroom that explains why - "Eden Lake (2008): Folk Horror for a Disenchanted World" - This is an intense one, good luck Jess!
Wow, this movie! I have so many thoughts about this roller coaster of an emotional ride this movie takes you on. Eden Lake played on so many of my fears: visiting new places, camping in the woods and being terrorized by a bunch of teenagers. All I could think about in the beginning of the film was how they kept ignoring the "red flags" of danger because Steve (Michael Fassbender) refused to be scared away by a bunch of children, feeling it was their right to be on the beach as much as them. I understand the desire not to be bullied and have the 'right' be do what you want, but there comes a point when someone needs to recognize that the conflict is not worth it and remove themselves from a situation that could escalate - which it did and it was terrifying. I was so impressed by Jenny (Kelly Reilly) going from that "see the good in everyone" kindergarten teacher to survival woman, fight back mode in her desperate act to get herself and Steve out alive. But you can see her visible mental turmoil as she is fighting back against teenagers who are inflicting so much brutality upon them. And just when you think things will get better for the couple you are served with one gut punch after another until the credits roll. This is definitely second wave folk horror at its finest.