Finding yourself in a secret place isolated from the outside world, with no memory of how you got there or who was behind the kidnapping, is exactly what the best horror stories and nightmares are made of.
But Lisa, the unfortunate victim from the torture shocker Meander – Survival Instinct from France, is of course not just anywhere, but in a perfidiously worked out labyrinth of pipes built for the amusement of an unknown, which seems to serve only one purpose: to make you and us sweat on our foreheads! It is obvious who was the godfather here.
Already the two horror-Classic Cube by Vincenzo Natali and SAW, but also current blockbuster hits like Escape room availed themselves of variable rooms from which it was a question of fighting and puzzling free, driven by panic and fear of death.
On this tried and tested terrain, there is a great risk of being stamped as a mere copy. But Mathieu Turi, who got his first spurs as a second unit director in productions like Lucy, 3 days to kill or Inglourious Basterds deserved, wants to do more than just quote and imitate.
Lisa has to escape hell
His contribution to the subgenre, filmed during the pandemic in France, is distinguished from the well-known role models by its unbelievable narrowness. The entire film takes place in a branching network of darkened metallic tubes, each peppered with its own traps and hurdles, for which Lisa only has a few minutes.
Should she not find the solution to the riddle in time, the result would be burned alive, doused with acid, crushed by a falling ceiling or impaled by metal spikes.
With the pulsating and urgent score behind it, the film creates an atmosphere driven by claustrophobia and oppressive narrowness, as we have it since Neil Marshalls The Descent – abyss of horror or Buried – buried alive have not seen any more.
Start in German retail this month
and Meanders sets its protagonist (Gaia Weiss from Amazon Prime’s historical series hit Vikings) still more stones in the way. Someone or something seems to be in the labyrinth with her and, like her, struggling to survive. And apparently there can only be one winner.
Real claustrophobics and those who are afraid of being under time pressure are part of it Meanders, which hits the shelves of German dealers without any further ado, such as a cinema premiere, on August 27, so bad cards.
Who, on the other hand, already played the nasty torture games SAW and Cube could gain something, should also work with Mathieu Turis Meander – Survival Instinct feel in good hands. Because it has been a long time since we were led onto the black ice as sneaky as here.
That could be interesting too