Directed by Chad Archibald
Starring Elma Begovic, Annette Wozniak, Denise Yuen
This is a low budget horror about a girl who goes on her Bachelorette, or Hen Party as we would call them, for a weekend with her close friends to a tropical resort. While there the cold feet she’s experiencing at the thought of the wedding comes to a head, and there is a misadventure and a bite from an unknown insect that leads to terror on her return home.
The best and easiest way to describe Bite is to put together two different movies. The first would be Rosemary’s Baby, and the second would be one of my guilty pleasures, Species. Now lets get it straight that is the first Species movie, not any of the other nine million that came out. Thankfully Bite shows that all involve understand the history of Horror, while also trying to do something new successfully.
As the film starts Casey, the bride to be, and her two friends Jill and Kirsten are off to a tropical resort to let their hair down before the wedding. This is all shot on video camera, and I thought that this was going to be the style of the film, thanking my lucky stars when they get home and it reverses to normal camera footage. At the resort they go through some drunken cold feet moments and while one of the friends tries to make her see that the nerves are normal, the other is throwing lighter fuel on the drama, and we find out later in the movie why this is.
Then there is what is either a drunken mistake or date rape, it’s never made fully clear, but either way Casey is finding it hard to talk about. On one of their final days they go to a secret beach and Casey gets bitten. Returning home and Casey must face her horrid Monster-in-Law-to-be, who is intent on ruining the relationship between Casey and her son Jared. But this bite that Casey received is turning her into something else, and you can guess that all the people we meet, up until the change, will fall victim to this change.
I love low budget horrors. They are fun and entertaining for the most part, they never take themselves too seriously and you can have a few friends around with some pizza and beer, throw on the DVD and just have a good night. Here while you’re going to find one or two of the performances a little bit of amateur night at the local stage school, the players of Casey and her future Mother in Law are just the highlight of the performers. Elma Begovic plays Casey and nails the unsure bride to be at first, and then slides perfectly into the creeping monster that the Bite starts to transform her into. Lawrene Denkers as the Mother in Law to be is just spot on, or maybe I’m just too used to Irish Mothers and how they feel about their sons, but this felt quite accurate.
The make-up and special effects are so well done, and while most of the lower budget horrors don’t take themselves seriously, and rightly so, this one does and what’s more it works. There is a pure understanding of the genre, a proper character development for Casey, and a decent build up to the finale. It’s not a perfect horror, but it’s nice to see someone understand what film they are making and then putting everything into it. The feeling at the end of the film is one that could lead to more movies, and I’d love to see a follow up to this. However as a standalone horror it’s a fine night in, in front of the DVD machine.
In my job I watch a lot of horror movies, and lets just say about eighty percent of those fail to hit the mark; most are entertaining though, but sadly very few actually scare me. While Bite doesn’t scare me as such, it certainly entertained me to the point that after the first watching I started it again. It’s a good viewing for horror fans and you can tell that those behind the camera have some form of knowledge and respect for the genre.