User Reviews (40)

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  • Warning: Spoilers
    Even if you can't come up with an exact title or two as proof of your conclusion, I am pretty confident that while watching "Desolation", you'll be saying "I have seen this basic story before." Needless to say, this saga of innocent people being stalked by a madman in the woods is sorely lacking originality. But it probably could have worked again, albeit in a somewhat familiar sense, if the filmmakers had added some spark. However, there is no real sign that the filmmakers were trying to make this stand out from the rest of the movies in the backwoods slasher genre. It takes forever for the movie to get going, with more than half of the movie going by before the protagonists find they are in serious trouble, with the movie padded out with inconsequential footage right up to that point. And when the protagonists start to flee for their lives, there is pretty much no tension or suspense. The movie just seems to be going through the motions weakly. One main reason for that is that the stalker is a pretty boring figure; he doesn't talk, just stands around and watches a lot, and has no apparent motivation for why he's doing what he's doing. About the only thing the filmmaker manage to do is make the movie look okay for its low budget; it's fairly well shot in scenic locations. Apart from that, this is pretty much a misfire, and I would have given it a much lower rating had it not just been 76 minutes long. You'd be better off seeking a copy of the 1977 Canadian backwoods horror movie "Rituals" instead.
  • This is a decent film. There's not a whole lot that's memorable about it, but it's not terrible by any means. There's a good chemistry between the two lead actresses and the actor who plays the son holds his own. There are a few moments of decent tension throughout, but nothing that really made me jump or put me on edge. Depending on who the viewing audience is, I think it could be rather effective.

    I liked the fact it didn't follow all the standard tropes you might expect something like this to fall into. That was a pleasant surprise for me. The movie moves along at a good pace and the short runtime is actually to its benefit. I think any longer and there would have been too many 'hurry up and get moving' moments.

    It seems this was done on a lower budget and there are times when it's obvious, but it doesn't affect the story so I can give it a pass when it comes to those moments. I'll warn you if you're a gore hound and looking for a lot of gore, this film has next to none. If you're looking for everything to be telegraphed and laid out for you, you may not enjoy it. There's a lot left up to the viewers to figure out and piece together. But, it's a horror/thriller and I personally don't really need everything explained, I can just go with it. I know that's not the case for everyone. So, be warned, if you're that type of viewer, you might want to skip it.
  • Nothing really new here except I don't think that I've ever watched a movie where the protagonists decide to go to sleep when they know they're being stalked through the woods as much as this group did...who would be able to sleep?!?!

    The small cast did good with what they were given. The initial set-up was tense enough and the killer was somewhat interesting in a mysterious way when he was kept farther away from the group.

    But as soon as the killer reached their campsite, the characters start doing dumb things and the killer wasn't so interesting anymore. I was surprised he was able to attack anyone in the dark woods considering he never took his sunglasses off! He had a very blank expression on his face throughout the movie and the most emotion that comes from him is when the kid breaks his sunglasses LOL!
  • Look, I love a good scary movie. I'll be the first to admit that I even like bad scary movies. So I figured, what the hell, I'll watch this on Netflix. It's bad but not in a good way. The "bad guy" just lingers in the distance, does not have one single line of dialogue, and has no apparent motivations for doing any of what he does through the movie. The relationship between the mother and son is good, but that's the only positive thing I have to say about this. I was bored and actively wishing the movie would end. Also, Mr. Bad Guy, who wears sunglasses in the forest at night? What's your deal? You were so boring but also so intriguing. What even is this movie? Skip it.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    This is just a bad movie not worth your time to watch. Bratty kid. Over protective mom. Bad influence friend of mom. Innocent hiker trying to stop them from littering by murdering them.

    Save yourself an hour of your life and do something else.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    I mean seriously how boring is it to have a man following you around and by the end you have no clue what his real purpose was in the movie. Waste of time I can never get back. It was free on Netflix. Which to me Netflix has gone down hill with stupid movies and shows.
  • donaldlyles15 December 2019
    Some people are not cut out for making movies. Bad acting, bad directing and bad everything else!
  • It was so bad, that we laughed, thinking did we really just waste time of our life on this. Do not waste your time.
  • Going into Desolation I had no idea what to expect, it was a nameless pick & mix movie for me.

    It tells the story of a pair of friends and a teenage boy who go hiking in the woods only to be stalked by a mysterious figure in black.

    It's very paint by number stuff but is done well enough to be entertaining.

    Our delightful stalker has no gimmick, he has no motivation and I really didn't like that. This Rob Zombie looking git had no character at all which hurt the film.

    Ultimately it delivers provided you aren't seeking originality or surprises. Its copy and paste the movie with every cliche in the book, but is just good enough to get past that.

    The Good:

    Well made

    Fairly tense

    Decent finale

    The Bad:

    Nothing original

    Dull antagonist

    Things I Learnt From This Movie:

    Maybe the killers motive was that kid being really annoying
  • I figured I'd give this movie a shot. Three words...waste of time. Sort of formulaic with a twist. If a weirdo is following you in the woods, why be so nonchalant about it. Head for home....quickly!!
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Hands down the worst movie I have ever seen. None of it is logical. Who hikes 4 days worth away from their car? Why don't they run? Do they all have arthritis (including the 10 year old boy)? The boy gets quite murderous a little too much a little too late. AND THEN they have to walk home? RIDICULOUS
  • Warning: Spoilers
    You can tell there wasn't a lot of money behind this movie and the subject has been done to death but this is a well constructed and well acted thriller, that also manages to operate as a sort of coming of age story.

    The setup couldn't be more simple. A woman, her son and a family friend go camping and encounter a deadly stalker. What happens after that isn't so formulaic (other than the death of someone). I liked the acting. The trio behaves very naturally, not a lot of overreacting and carrying on like you see in a lot of slasher movies. AND there is a sub-plot, the husband and father has recently died and now the mother and son are trying to adjust to life without him. Toby Nichols is very effective as the son who now wants to be taken seriously as the 'man of the family'. He and Jaime Paige make a very believable family unit. Alyshia Osche adds some charm as the family friend. Claude Duhamel who plays the stalker is sufficiently creepy.

    This kind of stripped down story and production makes it have a sort of 70s vibe. I liked where they went with the story. The mother and son behave like they are desperate but they aren't idiots and though they make the type of missteps people in a panic inducing situation would make, they prove very resourceful. I also like that the film makers didn't resort to a Horror cliche I truly hate, the false ending.

    On a side note, the one song in the movie, 'Memory' really works. The stalker uses it to creep out that campers. It sounds like a song from the 40s so I checked. Nope, written in 2013 and you can pick it for 5 bucks as a digital download.

    Anyway, I liked the movie. I give it a 7.5 and round it up a half point to compensate for the idiots on IMDB that live to trash movies. 'Desolation' is a good littler thriller and at 116 minutes, it flies by. Definitely worth a watch.
  • karma-082185 June 2018
    This definitely isn't the best film out there, but it wasn't terrible. It had some good tension and I got a good creepy vibe from the antagonist throughout the movie. There is really no explanation for him, but I didn't mind that. Who knows what kind of creepy people lurk in the woods in the middle of nowhere after all?

    The acting is decent though the characters make some painfully questionable decisions. This is probably the most irritating part of the movie. I liked that it has a short running time so they don't keep drawing out the situation. This helps the movie.

    It's not winning any awards, but it's definitely not the worst movie out there.
  • The plot is 2 women and one of their sons goes to the woods. They are stalked by a guy for no known reason no explanation and virtually no interaction. Things go bad and then there's an ending. And that's it.
  • You'd have to be desperate to watch this so-called horror movie. The 13-year-old boy had no personality, which might be why you don't care what happens to him. There was definitely something wrong, this should have been a nail-biter. Rather than take sleeping pills, watch this flick, you'll be asleep in no time. The best lines were given to the stalker...he didn't have any.
  • thedogwithoutaface16 September 2021
    Warning: Spoilers
    A very generous 1 star from me.

    This film is just awful.

    The premis of the film is just a mother and her son along with their friend going to scatter some ashes. The random killer just appears in the distance and has no motive. He follows them in complete silence and doesn't say a single word the entire film. Even at the point where the mother and some kill him in the end there is no fighting back dialogue. Who wears sunglasses in a dark forest at night.?. This lunatic apparently. That's actually the craziest thing about this mad man. The only thing I can pick out is that it's like a coming of age film for the son as he is the one that ultimately kills the bad guy defending his mum. He did the job his dad would have done.

    Overall terrible film and not really worth the watch. Avoid!!!!
  • I love scary movies that take place in the woods which is what drew me to this. It starts off slow and actually builds to some scary stuff then goes right downhill into totally stupid. Its just ridiculous how this movie goes.
  • I guess when you are setting out to make a "dead camper" type horror movie you should really pay attention to the impact the killer or stalker will have on the overall affect. We find out in the first few minutes that this mute dude seems like he got lost in the woods coming home from a rock concert and is to shy to ask for help finding his buddies. Any horror movie creep or killer that you feel like you could just walk up to them at any time and say hey $#@ head take a hike, is not very intimidating. I think had they cast a better stalker this movie would have received much higher grades.
  • karlaanderic-411284 December 2018
    This movie is good except for one major thing. Reasoning. There is none. There is just one small plot with no reason behind it. I am not going to spoil anything about this movie so I will say this, if you have time to kill this is not the worse movie to pick but it far from the best.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Firstly, don't be put off by my headline. It's true that you may run into some crazies on the trail. Perhaps not.. gut you like a pig-crazy, but crazy nonetheless. I.e. The young man who took a machete to numerous hikers on the Appalachian Trail earlier this year. Bear spray helps, but a gun tops all. Without cellular service and much help nearby, it's really the only solution when put in a bad situation.


    This movie wasn't as terrible as I expected it to be. The mother and son team striving for survival worked well. Acting was surprisingly great. Writing, not terrible. Directing and editing were also decent. Probably not for everyone though. Maybe my love for the outdoors and horror in general pushed me toward having a bias.

    I don't quite understand why the tag line for the film is "Never go off trail" because from what I've seen, them going off trail saved them. Pretty silly. But in general, yes, when hiking stay on the trail. A lot who don't can get lost and die of exposure. These two did just fine. Those trusty, old-fashioned maps are a godsend.

    I'll watch out for these actors and this director in the future. This film was exciting and kept me engaged throughout. Maybe others will say differently and I understand completely.

    The only part I personally had issues with is that they didn't do much to fight back against the killer/hiker. I'm sure in these situations it's incredibly hard to think clearly. And maybe I'm just that reckless person who would take my knife and lunge after the dudes internal organs. The kid spraying the guy with bear spray compensated a little for this. I've inhaled bear spray and it'll take ya out for a few minutes. But nothing like a good ol' knife to the chest.

    Overall, storyline was pretty cool and kudos to that! Did they ever get to scatter the husband's ashes? Did I miss that? 😂
  • NicholasMCG26 January 2020
    The script is so one layered and even the conversations if you listen, don't actually make sense between the characters and it sounds like they're reading right off a page. The setting is very cool, and the actor playing the son is the most likable in the script. But it felt like the Director just filmed straight from the page and didn't give a hoot about making it natural.
  • pryortwin10 May 2020
    The movie was predictable enough, but good enough that it kept me entertained. The main thing I wish they changed was added more to the antagonist, I was more curious as to why he was acting as he was over if the protagonists would survive.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    I enjoyed the tension this movie created without the usual, "heavy-on-the-gore" of most films of this genre. Very fine performances by the two female leads.

    Question for anyone out there who might know:

    Were some of the scenes shot in California or Nevada? I've lived in upstate NY and clearly most of the film was shot there, but I've also lived in California and some of the scenes look to have been shot there, in particular the scene near the end where the mom makes it to the campground and to the Jeep. The trees look to be Ponderosa pines (which do not grow in New York) and the underbrush has a lot of sagebrush or sagebrush-like bushes growing everywhere -- which also do not grow in New York.

    If anyone who worked on this film can answer, I'd really appreciate it as my curiosity has gotten the better of me. Thanks!
  • davidsobina5 June 2018
    I am always drawn to movies that take place in the woods. Not totally sure why! Anyway, this movie was... OK. I wish they were planning out characters and story line better, they could have gone a little deeper than "Creepy Dude in the woods who doesn't talk". Come on... that's just lazy writing. And it looks like they dresses him with photo booth props . Overall it was borderline watchable...
  • Warning: Spoilers
    234. Desolation. Another film that proves camping is stupid. So we have two women that look a lot like Laura Linney, two besties, and they are hiking up a mountain with LL#1's son, who looks a lot like Mike from Stranger Things. They're hiking up the mountain to spread the ashes of LL#1's husband, and father to Mike. Aww... However along the way, they seemed to have picked up a stalker, one that looks a lot like Rob Zombie. The first night out, the LL's engage in extremely illegal activity... they drink wine, and thanks to a geocache, smoke a joint, even worse tho... when packing up the site LL#2 leaves the empty bottles of wine back at the campsite. And now we enter the why phase. It seems Rob Zombie does not like litter bugs, and well LL#2, she's the first to die. Wow, spoiler alert much? Then of course Rob turns his attention to LL#1 and son Mike. I won't ruin the rest of the movie for you, but I'll say Rob Zombie must not have seen Stranger Things cause he doesn't realize Mike is wicked smaht, and the movie was pretty bad. :) There's no chemistry between the characters, and lolzzz... they kind of rip off Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter, Feldman ending.
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