MIFF 2012: According to “100 Bloody Acres”, country roads really are the most dangerous
100 Bloody Acres
Directed by Cameron and Colin Cairnes
Written by Cameron and Colin Cairnes
Tucker and Dale vs Evil subverted the Evil Hick subgenre of slasher films where others – led by Rob Zombie – were satisfied with mining ever deeper the mythology of the murderous, cretinous backwoods of middle America, the America of Ed Gein and Leatherface. Well, Australia has its own take on the city slicker/country bumkin divide and the results of such close encounters. Notwithstanding the lone backpacker slayers of the deep outback epitomised in Wolf Creek or the drunkenly sinister small-towners of Wake in Fright, rural Australia is more the province of down-to-earth living, mateship, hard drinking and primary industry. And perhaps a measure of family values.
Cameron and Colin Cairnes are two brothers who have made their feature debut about two brothers, Reg and Lindsay Morgan, the owners of what they repeatedly remind us is a legitimate small business. They manufacture blood and bone fertiliser, a fantastic source of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium if you ask anyone versed in the art of gardening. The thing about the Morgan brothers’ product though is that it does not discriminate species-wise when it comes to obtaining the freshest raw material. Whether it be a car-battered roo freshly lifted from the warm bitumen and fed into a grotesque flesh grinder or the six victims of a particularly horrendous country road accident whose bodies were never found amidst the wreckage, the brothers’ blood and bone isn’t on its way to being the premier plant food money can buy just by sheer chance. This we learn in the film’s opening minutes when Reg comes upon a truck totalled against a tree on his way back to the Morgan workshed. Seeing that the bloodied victim is unresponsive and the coast is as clear as it often is in the Australian bush, Reg stows this godsend in the back of his truck and continues on his way until he comes across a trio of young…stranded…lascivious road-trippers…on their way to a music festival.