Patrol Men (2010)

Directed by: ,
Written by: , ,
Starring: , , ,




Patrol Men (2010)

(18) Running time: 90 minutes

Directors: David Campion, Ben Simpson

Writers: David Campion, Ben Simpson, Niall Maher

Cast: Chloe Van Harding, Anthony Abuah, Ian Fielding, Josh Golga

Reviewed by: Matt Wavish

David Campion and Ben Simpson make their directing and writing debuts with Patrol Men, a new British horror that caught my eye thanks to the rather chilling DVD sleeve. A gas mask always causes some sort of disturbing response, and it was a good way to sell the film by putting it on the sleeve and poster. Considering Patrol Men is also British, I was more than willing to give it a shot, but does it give British horror something new to add to its list of inventive horror?

Sadly no, there is a lot wrong with Patrol Men, and sadly a creepy idea is lost amidst some bad acting, bad production and hideously choreographed kills and so-called fight scenes. The film gained an 18 certificate, although I am not really sure why. The majority of the violence either takes place off screen, or the camera cuts away and comes back after the fact, probably because there was no budget to actually create the violence on screen. Patrol Men is sadly hindered by a serious lack of budget, and while it is clear the directors have tried desperately to do their best with what they have, the film never truly delivers.


The film takes place in a fictional village where the residents are controlled by a power hungry Mayor, and a curfew which see’s the Patrol Men ensure everyone stays inside after dark. Even TV is limited due to the fact the Mayor wants his small community to be as insular and protected as possible. The Patrol Men keep everyone indoors for fear of a serial killer returning after he murdered some locals years ago. Local girl Alex (Harding) is persuaded by out of towner ,and newcomer to the island Jess (Golga), to go against the rules, stay out late and attempt to get to the bottom of the serial killer legend. This brings local mechanic Okie (Abuah) into the mix. He seriously wants to sleep with Alex, and he also hides a dark secret as his Grandfather (who lives with him) has severe hallucinations and violent episodes, and may hold the key to the identity of the serial killer.

The mystery is interesting, but the delivery of the dialogue is un-convincing, and many scenes are far too staged to take seriously. The film does offer up some chilling imagery and cleverly shot moments of tension, but these a few and far between, and a film relying on its story to do the work suffers because the cast simply can’t handle it. Unfortunately the action and violence is very poorly put together, and often the production is so bad that the soundtrack drowns out the dialogue. Patrol Men is messy, and some lazy writing means that not everything is always explained (the gas masks being one of them). Apart from Alex, the characters are very difficult to connect with, and while the Patrol Men themselves can at times be quite creepy, they don’t really deliver the menace they could have.

Saying that, as a first film, Patrol Men has plenty of ideas and chilling moments. With a bigger budget and a better cast, the directors might have a bright future ahead. This is not just another average slasher flick, and Patrol Men does have a level of originality that will make it stand out from the crowd. Whether the film is memorable is questionable, but I will be keen to see what the directors come up with next.

Rating: ★★★☆☆☆☆☆☆☆


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About Matt Wavish 598 Articles
A keen enthusiast and collector of all horror and extreme films. I can be picky as i like quality in my horror. This doesn't necessarily mean it has to be a classic, but as long as it has something to impress me then i'm a fan. I watch films by the rule that if it doesn't bring out some kind of emotive response then it aint worth watching.

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