"Welp" generated quite a hype here in our lovely little country of Belgium because it allegedly is the very first horror movie to emerge from here; - or at least from the geographical Dutch speaking part named Flanders. That just isn't true since we previously had horror (and cult) classics such as "Devils of Darkness", "Lucker", "Parts of the Family", "Afterman" and "Engine Trouble". It's even debatable that this is the first horror film to be spoken entirely in Flemish because there exists also "Linkeroever", "Alias", "De Potloodmoorden" and an obscure little dud called "The Antwerp Killer". But, seriously, who cares if it isn't the first? It also isn't the most inventive horror movie and it certainly isn't the greatest horror movie ever made, but what counts most is that "Welp" is inarguably a highly entertaining Belgian horror outing with a tense & gripping atmosphere, strong acting performances and a bit of nasty gore footage. The protagonists in "Welp" are all junior boy scouts, which was a terrific idea of writer/director Jonas Govaerts, as this is a typically Belgian phenomenon. Practically everyone in this country joined some kind of scout federation in their youth. Yours truly didn't, and I can assure you that I was quite the outcast in school because of this. On Wednesday afternoons all my classmates went to the woods to play scout games, while I went home to my couch and watch horror movies that I wasn't allowed to watch yet. Ah, memories
One of the boy scouts, Sam, is a bit of an outcast as well. On their way to the Southern Belgian backwoods (called "The Ardennes") for their annual survival camp, Sam spots a mysterious shape and secret hideout place between the trees, but nobody believes him. Little Sam is right of course, as the forestry area soon turns out to be the turf of a vicious serial killer and his bewildered infant sidekick. The other cubs constantly humiliate Sam and the scout leaders are too busy with making out and being arrogant, but they won't be able to ignore the deadly booby-traps that are placed all around the woods. "Welp" features a large number of clichés and stereotypes, but I suppose that is almost inevitable when you're making a slasher throwback movie. The parts that are similar to "Friday the 13th" and other classics could also easily be referred to as homages, for that matter. More important is that director Jonas Govaerts perfectly knows the true meaning of the term "horror" and he isn't afraid to break through taboos or insert shocking plot twists. For example, there are a couple of disturbing death sequences involving young children and even a scene where a dog is used as a piñata! Furthermore is the atmosphere of the film continuously macabre and unsettling, with an almost complete lack of humor in the script, but a strong presence of tenebrous camera-work and frightening music. The acting performances are terrific, too. The young actor Maurice Luijten impresses the most, but also Titus De Voogdt and the lovely Evelien Bosmans are very good as the scout leaders. Stef Aerts gives the best grown-up performance as the arrogant and self-centered scout leader Baloo. His behavior might seem exaggerated, but according to several former cub friends of mine, idiotic leaders like him apparently do exist.
Adventure / Horror
Adventure / Horror
Sam, 12, is in trouble: his entire "Pathfinder" scout troop picks on him - and worse. The leader, Peter, is the worst of all. He seems to find a sadistic pleasure in humiliating Sam. This year's trip is to a woods near the French border where a curious legend named Kai is said, around the campfire, to make mischief. But when Sam finds that Kai is no legend and that he makes more than mischief, no one believes him.
Uploaded By: FREEMAN
February 19, 2021 at 02:50 AM