Directed by: Tyler-James, Catherine Carpenter
Written By: Tyler-James
Starring: Becky Fletcher, Bruce Langley, Natalie Amanda Gray
Production Company – Proportion Productions
Deadly Waters follows Jake, a young newspaper reporter in a seaside town, investigating a series of men disappearing over the last number of years. Some believe they simply ran away, some that there’s a killer on the loose, but local legend persists that the shores are visited by beautiful Sirens who feed on the men who are invariably attracted to them. When Jake splits up with his girlfriend it just so happens that he encounters a stunning young lady washed up on the beach who may well answer the question of what exactly is happening to these men!
This is a zero-budget production and while it occasionally shows – certain night time scenes are barely visible – it is on the whole very competent; aside from the few issues at night, it is shot very nicely with care having gone into many of the shots rather than a “get it in the can & move on ASAP” attitude that a lot of these sorts of films have when faced with constraints of time & money. It’s a clear indication that this film aspires to rise above the limitations that some might put on it.
The story is somewhat straight-forward but this is used to an advantage, creating a dark fairy-tale feel contrary to the mundane setting of Brighton (I’m sure it’s a lovely place really…). The dark, sombre story of Jake & the Siren is interspersed with segments that switch to a more Grindhouse, excessive tone, with some locals heading to the beach for sex & debauchery, ultimately getting chomped by the Sirens.
Obviously added to lighten the mood & add some action there’s the standard servings of boobs & gore aplenty, but I thought they didn’t stray far enough away from the serious tone to be comic relief & did not end up being a bit awkward or feeling out of place. This is only a handful of short sequences though, so not a deal breaker.
The cast are very good; while Bruce Langley has the difficult issue of playing a character who spends most of his time pouting, he pulls it off well, aided by a script that pushes his character far enough into self-pity without making him look like a miserable teenager. The stand-out however is Becky Fletcher who has practically no lines but still plays the Siren as a terrifying, mesmerising character.
This is the feature debut of the two directors, and considering this plus the zero budget the result is incredibly impressive. Some admiration is in order simply to get a watchable movie made under these circumstances. Deadly Waters is much more than that however, and shows great promise for a duo who clearly take care in their film making. I will be very keen to see what they manage with bigger budgets, which I hope this film will allow them to achieve.
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