I can tell already that THE WINDMILL will be one of those Love-It-or-Hate-It movies. It has all the components for a successful genre film, but I can still see many folks out there thinking it too hokey or too ludicrous of a concept.
What are my thoughts? I loved it. Granted, it’s not a perfect film…but it is fun and entertaining; full of intrigue and suspense, it moves at a nice clip and has some great gore. Not to mention, I like the premise. I will not give anything away, but I didn’t see the “big reveal” until it happened. If you’re looking for a great Halloween film, and you have good reality-detachment skills, then I am certain you will enjoy THE WINDMILL as much as I did.
If you are not familiar with THE WINDMILL, here is the plot synopsis courtesy of XLrator Media:
THE WINDMILL is an English-language slasher about a group of tourists from all over the world who embark on a windmill tour through the Dutch countryside and end up facing cold-blooded, masked killer who lives in an abandoned windmill. One by one, he goes after the members of the group using his scythe, spiked wooden shoes, and the mill to grind and mold his victims. Through the last survivors, we learn the horrific truth and the motivations behind this madman.
THE WINDMILL combines the richness and traditions of The Netherlands and drenches them in blood. Its iconic green fields, grazing black & white cows, bulb fields, panoramic skies, and traditional windmills will never be the same again after seeing…THE WINDMILL.
THE WINDMILL is shot well and appears to have a fairly high production budget. The cinematography does a great job of telling the story but also in capturing the rich scenery of the Netherlands countryside.
The acting is pretty good, although I don’t think any of the cast will win awards for it. I always enjoy seeing Noah Taylor onscreen, and Charlotte Beaumont does a fine job as the main character, Jennifer. They are joined by a decent ensemble of talent, and I wouldn’t mind seeing more of each actor’s work outside of this film.
The special effects are top notch. I greatly enjoyed The Miller’s make-up and costume. He is both menacing and terrifying, a perfect genre addition to the likes of Michael Myers, Freddy Kruger, and Jason Voorhees. I also loved the gore. There are some particularly nasty scenes that stand out, such as a guy getting chopped off at the legs and a girl who takes a large hook to the face. I backtracked each scene and re-watched them both, just to enjoy the carnage a couple of times over.
And as I mentioned above, the plot in THE WINDMILL is interesting and fun…IF you can suspend a few notions of reality. I, personally, do not have much of a problem doing this, therefore I had a great time watching the film. But if you’re the kind of person who has to have EVERYTHING spelled out and all factors involved laid bare, then you’ll probably hate this movie.
As for flaws in the film, I do have a couple to point out. First, we are never told how the bus driver fits into anything in regard to the plot. He is a part of the big reveal, yes, but we are never told how. This doesn’t detract from the movie too much, but it was enough to make me stew on it for a while.
Also, I have to comment on the lack of subtitles when the Japanese character, Takashi, is speaking. I’m not sure if my DVD screener copy just omitted them somehow, or if the filmmakers left them out on purpose…but I feel like I missed a whole section of backstory because I didn’t know what he was saying.
But those points aside, THE WINDMILL is a lot of fun, and it’s a perfect addition to your Halloween movie list. The film hits VOD and theaters next week, just in time for the holiday.