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Severance (2006)
Germany / English
"Another bloody office outing. "
When a weapons multi-national Palisade Defense reward their European sales division with a team-building weekend in the mountains of Eastern Europe...
Toby Stephens Harris
Claudie Blakley Jill
Andy Nyman Gordon
Babou Ceesay Billy
Tim McInnerny Richard
Laura Harris Maggie
Danny Dyer Steve
David Gilliam George
Juli Drajkó Olga
Judit Viktor Nadia
Sándor Boros Coach Driver
Levente Törköly Lodge Killer
János Oláh Flamethrower Killer
Attila Ferencz Head-squish Killer
Bela Kasi Headbutt Killer
Director: Christopher Smith
Producer: Jason Newmark
Writer: James Moran,Christopher Smith
Funny horror
It never reaches the brilliance of the great horror comedies like 'The Evil Dead' and its sequels, or Peter Jackson's 'Braindead', or the more recent 'Shaun of the Dead', but from time to time it knows how to get close. 'Severance', a British horror-comedy, knows how to create laughs in the first half and how to be pretty scary in the second. The main flaw is not that the story itself is cliché, but that it is not used in its advantage, like in 'Shaun of the Dead'.

With the purpose of team building some co-workers from a weapons multi-national called Palisade Defense are staying in a lodge in Western-Europe. Of course this lodge is in the middle of the woods and trouble starts when the bus driver does not want to take a needed detour, leaving the eight (two women, six men) on their own to find the lodge. That one of them has used some drugs is, no matter how simple, very funny. Once in the lodge, a very disappointing one, the story really starts when one of the women sees a man before her window, even though she is on the second floor. The scene itself gives us an impression of director Christopher Smith's ability to play his audience.

Most of the time the comedy is a result of this. Showing unexpected things, especially when they are completely out of place, may seem an easy trick but why complain when it works? Especially the music that does not fit and on the most exiting moment something as simple as a burp are able to break the tension with a laugh. The characters all have their own quirky little things and logically the less interesting characters are killed off first, leaving us with the right people for the finale. The finale, which brings more suspense than one might expect, gives us the biggest laugh before it falls flat which by then is no big deal anymore.

'Severance' is entertainment on multiple levels. Although it could have been smarter I liked it on the level it wants to play. Most of the time the suspense is there and the jokes work. There really is no reason to complaint too much.

Seen it:Ja
Nr of disks/tapes:1
Storage device:DVD
Imdb rating: 6.8
Musician: Christian Henson
Running time: 90 min (Toronto International Film Festival)
Subtitles: Svenska
Audio tracks: Dolby Digital 5.1 [English]
Everything else:
Last modified: 2007-07-19 20:27:3