When good old Jimmy Corkhill said goodbye to Brookside Close, that was probably the last time I ever thought I see those row of houses ever again. But no…the Close returns only this time there is no Barry Grant in sight, just a serious off balance British horror that could have been a blinder!
Its Christmas Eve and a young daughter is being driven to her Mother’s house against her wishes. It seems that father and mother are separated for reasons that are never disclosed for despite a decent start which suggests a plot line that would be pivotal for this film, it is completely disregarded. Now I am telling you this as not to pay too much attention to the opening 20 minutes. We introduced to two characters that are virtually never seen again. As soon as the daughter arrives at her Mum’s house and finds her having sex with a stranger, she is gone, runs to a house across the street, and that is it. We are then left with Mum and her one night stand fella, and all connection we have built as all but disappeared, a massive mistake already 25 minutes into the film.
As the Mother is not a character we can actually care for. Even when she tries to find her daughter and begs her to come home, this lasts a few minutes before she gives up and trod home. Ok, things happen that of course stop her from going back, but even when the shit hits the fan, she still does everything wrong and the frustration that the viewers feel from this film is somewhat overwhelming.
Its the inconsistent plot moves that make Salvage so damn unlikeable. Its not a terrible film and it creates a suitable atmosphere from its very low budget, but what all horrors need is some sort of common sense and people we can relate to, when we have neither then you know what you watching will be soon forgotten 10 minutes after the credits roll.
As it is, a container is found washed ashore and its links are directed to maybe a terrorist attack. It seems something on the Close is roaming the back ways and the arrival of a bunch of Soldiers that thanks to the budget can only account to five, suggests something bad is going to happen this morning.
And that is it for plot!
Which is ok, as to be fair, not all horrors are known for complicated plot lines, and Salvage tries hard to build a sense of not knowing and fear but it all comes across as a jumbled mess. As the mother is trapped inside the house in which I say trap when in reality she could leave, she stays and panics about her daughter when nearly every one of us would actually do something.
Her downbeat annoying one night stand, goes a bit bonkers which suggests that we are heading for A Liverpool style Crazies moment when just like his sudden decent into madness, he quickly becomes normal again. Of course the cliche ridden scene of wounded Soldier is put into play, giving the viewer the overall plot to what the heck is going on but by then you probably just do not care, especially when it comes to one of the most laughable scenes in horror history. It involves some one taking a Wee! and at first its quite hard to believe that someone actually wrote that scene and then another one thought it was OK to put said scene in film.
I would love and I mean love to go into detail about that one moment, but it would spoil the end but even 24 hours after watching, I am still shocked at such crap film making.
Salvage as won many word of mouth acclaim, but for me, it done nothing, and the stupid final shot where howls of despair came crying out of one character was the only time I felt some connection to a character…only because I realised how much life I wasted watching this pile of dross!
OVERALL: Totally off balance, a horror that may be winning fans over, but seeing the old houses in the background made me wish for the days when Brookside was good and I was watching that!!!!!!!