While not the worst film I've ever seen, this is certainly among the most disappointing. A feeble and wretched excuse for a horror movie, featuring idiotic characters, bad dialogue, awful pacing, or lack thereof, and some of the worst writing I've seen since leaving primary school. Not quite the raw, visceral experience we were anticipating then. Sure, it divided critics, but those who didn't like it (Roger Ebert, say) seemed to do so because of moral squeamishness rather than, say, because the film had all the cinematic impact of a wet noodle. A guy and two girls driving across Australia encounter a friendly, but odd, guy who offers to help them repair their truck and give them a place to crash. They wake up to find themselves in serious trouble; one girl frees herself, and then must try to rescue her friends from the loony Antipodean.
It takes an hour to get that far, but I think the film lost us completely after she shot the psycho in the neck. The gun has just one bullet, but instead of whacking his head with it until he's a bloody pulp, she taps him once on the back and scurries off. All you could hear at TC Towers was the sound of our eyes rolling. Similarly, when supposedly trying to find a car and get the hell out of there - having pushed a perfectly functional truck off a cliff - she dallies to play with multiple camcorders and gaze at the possessions nailed to a wall. It's as if the writer hadn't seen a genre entry from the last thirty years. The only worthy element is Jarratt as the killer, who brings a disturbing quality to scenes, simply by staring. But he's crap at his profession: he ties up three people and they all get loose? Sigh. Should have known this'd suck, from the "based on a true story" claim at the beginning - rarely a good sign. At least House of Wax had Paris Hilton dying impressively. How do I get 100 minutes of my life back?