User Reviews (14)

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  • Swedish drama 'Black Lake' combines the vibe of 'The Blair Witch Project' with a Mexican standoff, as a group of young people gradually lose it in an isolated winter resort, driven mad by strange (and possibly supernatural) events. Unfortunately, the story defies logic: any normal person would just run away once people start dying, instead the protagonists spend the entire drama venturing on their own into dark cellars where their friends have already been killed, with predictably awful results. By the end, I barely understood the plot, but each episode felt like a repeat of its predecessor. In conclusion: not one of the best Scandi-dramas.
  • ''Black Lake'' is a Nordic series (Danish, Swedish and Norwegian co-production) that attempts to mingle a classic mystery whodunit plot with supernatural horror elements and, in my opinion, the result was rather poor especially in the second season. The story involves the visit to an abandoned ski resort by a group of young Danish and Swedish people, in order to repair and reopen it. But the place has its own secrets and soon sinister phenomena begin to affect the visitors who will have to unearth the secrets of the past in order to stay alive and get out of there in one piece. The first season casts some really talented Scandinavian actors with Sarah-Sofie Boussnina's exquisite beauty shining in the 8 episodes of the first cycle. In the second season the actors involved are Filip Berg, who is the connecting link between the two seasons as he is the only actor selected to perform the role of the spoiled rich kid Johan, André Eriksen and Hedda Stiernstedt who delivers a great performance as the sensitive and goodhearted Minnie. I think that the first season was better in terms of both plotting and characterization while the second had a rather weak story with uneven pacing and lack of climax in the ending. The supernatural element, which had a major significance in season 1, has no clear function in the story and it could be even totally omitted by the production with no consequences as far as the plot is concerned. I have to say that my rating (3/5 stars) concerns the first season while if I had to rate the second one it would be closer to 2/5 stars. Overall, ''Black Lake'' is certainly not the hottest Nordic Noir television production, nevertheless it offers some thrilling and chilling moments, especially in the first season. Both seasons are consisted of 8 episodes of 45 minutes each, so it makes for a rather quick watch. It is recommended for the fans of the genre but I would be hesitant to suggest it to a wider audience.
  • hableconella-750031 October 2017
    Biggest load of rubbish I've watched in ages. Never got better. Totally artificial. Not possible to suspend disbelief at any time in this poor show. Poor script and ludicrous plot. As much as the story line has some credibility it fell into nonsense. It could not be taken remotely seriously.
  • Every single character seems determined to act as stupidly as possible at every opportunity. The fact that a character has acted suspiciously gets forgotten a scene later. This happens not once, not twice but every twenty minutes or so. And it keeps happening as the body count goes up.

    I watched the last two episodes in a spirit of only another 90 minutes more to go.
  • jgw3219 October 2017
    Had the makings of a thriller but poor writing let it down. None of the characters had any redeeming characteristics and behaved irrationally throughout. This sort of film will work as a supernatural thriller, or as one that appears to be, but turns out to have rational explanations; but if you try to have both, as this film did, it doesn't work. Poor example of what Scandie drama can be.
  • The daftest "thriller" it's been my misfortune to watch for a long time. Having said that, it was SO awful I had to keep watching 😆
  • niteraleph16 September 2018
    In short - it's really good. The Swedish horror takes a great deal of unoriginal and common themes, but manages to connect them in such a way, that it's hard to stop watching. The movies strengths, are most definitely:
    • Aesthetics: (from the intro, to the scenery to the actors themselves, the movie is beautiful and it's cold atmosphere works well with the plot).
    • Properly done shots: I personally dislike many of "spoiling" horror shots or predictable scenes. 'Black Lake' does have a couple of those, but not enough to spoil the fun.
    • Music - not intrusive but atmospheric (and fitting well the movie's aesthetics)
    • Ending - while there is one detail which annoyed me in the ending, what I like is that here it doesn't come in a 'one big bang' but unfolds through at least 2 episodes and reveals more than one secret.
    The weaknesses:
    • Uneven perfomance - varying not as much between characters, as between the same characters in different episodes. Sometimes it's really good, however at some scenes you get the impression the protagonists are dull inside. Perhaps it's intended though
    • Characters doing stupid things - okay, so this one is extremely common in horrors and 'Black Lake' is not the worst one... but neither clean of this sin. A person who - by themselves even though they can call their boyfriend/girlfriend or simply friends, decided to visit a creepy cellar alone? Stupid. And what's worse is that this behaviour repeats to the very end (even when the character's are perfectly aware of the dangers).

    If there's ever season 2 I will certainly watch it
  • Warning: Spoilers
    After watching the first series I should have known better. But short of something to watch I gave series 2 a go. 8 episodes that should have been 4. I have watched paint dry quicker ! Every horror story cliche was given an airing - flickering lights, creaking doors, howling wind and mysterious shadows to name a few. I tried to give up half way but was determined to stick it out to see if the story actually went anywhere. It's like a book you start reading, find it's rubbish and skip chapters just to get to the end. If they come out with a series 3, I will give it a miss !
  • surfisfun17 September 2017
    worth 7 + .

    decent cinematography.

    English subtitles easy to read.

    have that northern European TV series style that I like.

    maybe the actors are too good looking...
  • When a group of good looking 20 something Swedes head off for a skiing holiday to a remote ski lodge, it turns out that more than Skiing, Schnapps and Sex are on the agenda. Unknown to them twenty years previously a family staying at the lodge had been brutally murdered. This of course means strange things start to happen. Lights flicker on and off books fly off shelves and one by one the group start acting strangely. All this and throw in a creepy caretaker and a cellar that no one will dare enter, and you have an above average thriller set in the stunning Swedish mountains. 7/10
  • Tweekums7 October 2017
    Warning: Spoilers
    Johan is hoping to buy a disused hotel and ski resort in a remote area of Sweden, near the Norwegian border, so goes there with a group of friends to check it out. The resort was built several years ago but never opened because of a murder that took place there. It wasn't abandoned though; a caretaker was employed to look after the building. He isn't the friendliest of characters but shows them round; he tells them not to try to go down into the locked cellar. Disturbing things start to happen almost straight away; the first night one of the girls hears a banging from the cellar but even then the caretaker refuses to open the door. It soon becomes apparent that some people there are determined that Johan won't buy the resort but their motives aren't obvious. That is the least of their worries though. They start finding strange pictures, which look as though they were drawn by a child; then one of the girls attacks her boyfriend claiming that if she doesn't kill somebody she will die… things soon get even worse and it is clear that they won't all survive.

    This was an impressive chiller; the beautiful snowbound location created a good sense of isolation and the old hotel was delightfully creepy. There were some genuinely scary moments; often this was when it felt like something bad was sure to happen any moment rather than when something actually happened. The question is to whether the threat was human or something else remained for some time; although the way several of the guests suffered what appeared to be an infection in one eye before going on to behave strangely suggested the latter. The story nicely incorporated Scandinavia myths, with talk of Mylings, references historical mistreatment of the native Sami people as well as more modern motives. There are some clichés of course; Johan and his friends are the typical attractive twenty-somethings and the ending is slightly ambiguous; there is a suggestion that the survivors won't last long but they are still well when the credits roll. Overall I'd recommend this series; it is nicely creepy, has some good scares and is different from most series coming out of Scandinavia (at least that have made it to the UK).

    These comments are based on watching the series in the original languages with English subtitles.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    After the first two weeks of October were pretty rubbish,I started trying to catch up on Horror viewings for the rest of the month. Looking at the TV listings,I found a Horror mini-series about to air,which led to me dipping into the black lake.

    The plot:

    Gathering all his friends, Johan takes all of them on holiday to a ski centre that has never been opened. Arriving at the centre,Johan reveals that he is in the final stages of buying the place up. Over the next few days,Johan's pals get bloodshot eyes,hear strange noises,and find a locked room in the centre. Unknown to Johan's friends,the place has been left disused,after a murder took place decades ago…

    View on the series:

    Directing 4 eps each, David Berron & co-writer/(with Peter Arrhenius/Moa Herngren and Ulf Kvensler) director Jonathan Sjöberg use the isolated setting of the disused ski centre for a frosty horror atmosphere of a whistling wind filling the silences and the unexpected shutting of doors reverberating down the corridors. Laced with a tingling score from Björn Palmberg, Berron and Sjöberg mix tinted glimpses to a ghostly past with bloodshot sides of gore,that give the series a much-needed hit of urgency.

    Keeping all the group held up in one location,the writers set the foundation for a haunted teen horror,with some psychological depth. Running at a trim 42 minute run-time for each ep,the writers offer signs of a "body count" chiller, but freezes all hope of it coming to life,with the eps being largely filled with poorly-written attempts to explore each character,that ends in them all losing their initial motivation to solve the case. Eyeing a supernatural horror,the writers at first open the door to a mysterious slow-burn puzzle of what took place at the centre. As the episodes unfold,the writers sadly take missteps in allowing no progression in the building of the horrors, (why would no one think of breaking the door down?) until the very last moment,which to a thud of a "twist ending",that sinks into the black lake.
  • The first season doesn't beak any new ground in the horror genre, but it's a fun enough riff off The Shining taking place in an abandoned ski resort and pulling from aspects of Swedish racism to build its story. Has good atmosphere and a lively performance from Aliette Opheim. The second season is awful, though - a prequel to the first, of sorts, but so slow moving that nothing really happens at all, leading to a finale so anticlimactic that you barely notice it - there's not even enough to it to qualify as dumb fun.
  • Säsong 1 helt klart sevärd, men säsong 2 kunde kvitta. Säsong 2 utspelar sig för säsong 1.