Low budget films can be a great source of entertainment. They can have budgets of £100 up to £1 million.
Those who think a million is a large budget should be reminded that films like Avatar: The Way of Water cost up to £450 million to produce.
So, onto the film at hand: Winnie-The-Pooh: Blood and Honey.
This film was teased online, for a single showing event, which eventually got so popular that a theatrical release was pushed worldwide.
With a budget of just £100k, it was shot over ten days in Ashdown Forest, East Sussex. Straight of the bat, it’s clear that special effects was a major part of the film – and it was genuinely disturbing. Anyone with a love for Winnie-The-Pooh should probably stay clear because it is horrific.
That being said – it’s time to discuss why it’s only for a 4% (Critics) and a 50% (Audience) ratings on Rotten Tomatoes
At the beginning of the film, it starts in a very similar way that many Winnie-The-Pooh films start – setting the scene in the 100 acre woods, introducing us to Christopher and friends.
But soon enough it gets sinister. Christopher goes to “college” (university) to become a doctor and goes back to 100 acre woods 5 years later to find his friends had become cannibals.
The story is all over the place. At first, we’re following Christopher Robin and his soon to be wife. Without any real reason, they hide thinking something creepy was happening – and that was a good choice on this occasion.
Soon after we meet Alice, who appears to be the main character. She’s in a therapist appointment because she’s been through a stalking trauma – which isn’t explained until half way through the film and was extremely poorly written.
Alice and five friends went into the 100 acre woods for a weekend away where they each get killed in gruesome ways.
While the story is lacking and the acting is subpar, the gore and special effects are spot on. The masks for Winnie and Piglet are beautifully horrific.
How could the film be better?
Well, I think changing the cast would’ve done the film some good. Shrinking the cast numbers from 17 (Alice, her five friends, Winnie, Piglet, Therapist, 2 additional tourists, 4 men, Christopher, and his girlfriend) to 8. I’d keep Winnie and Piglet (Piglet doubles as Alice’s stalker in flashbacks), but use Winnie as Alice’s Therapist. I’d shrink the 4 additional men to two and scrap the tourists. Alice would only have two friends – the first killed quickly and the second replacing the woman chained up and I’d scrap Christopher Robin’s girlfriend.
The storyline of stalker needs to be refined, because it makes no sense that her friends weren’t aware of it.
Besides the casting cuts to save money, they could’ve also toned down the CGI. We needed more stalking – because that would’ve made much more sense than immediate killing.
After all, if Alice is afraid of being stalked due to her trauma, surely being stalked by a 6 foot yellow bear would’ve been intense.
Also, we could’ve done without the burning cars at the end – that’s a money pit…
I will say, however, that the music in the film was spot on. The splurged on a violinist and it showed – it definitely added to certain scenes.
So, what would I rate it?
Well, IMDB has a 3.3/10, which I think it a little generous but also not generous enough.
If we’re going off the story and quality of acting: 2/10.
Horror factor: 4/10.
Music and Special Effects: 6/10.
Overall, I’ll give it a 4/10. I’m unlikely to watch it again, even though I loved the idea of it. But I’ll definitely watch the second film (because it’s teased at the end that a second film is on the way) to see how it improves.
For the time and money spent, I think they did a pretty good job!
And turning over a £4.5 million profit off the back of £100k – it’s impressive and very well done.
If you’re going to watch it, I’d suggest a cinema trip or a rent-a-movie. Try before you buy.
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