Trucker harasses silly city slickers on a dusty desert road. It's a concept we've seen many times before, from Spielberg's Duel to Jeepers Creepers and Joyride, with varying degrees of success. The latest in this convoy is Wrecker, a female-driven (geddit) take on the convention in which two young women and their Mustang find themselves chased about the desert by a pissed off driver in a souped-up tow truck.
If you've seen any of its inspirations, be it The Hitcher or Death Proof, you'll know its game: a series of tense car chases, largely predicated on everyone involved forgetting that Mustangs are generally faster than tow trucks. Again and again our heroines run into the faceless driver on the road, get chased for a bit, escape, breathe a sigh of release and then repeat the process... again and again. “How much longer, goddammit, how much longer?” frustrated Emily sobs, echoing thoughts of our own.
There's a bit of variation when one of the girls is kidnapped, but only in as far as we're left watching one of them drive up and down the road (occasionally chased by a crazed truck driver) instead of two. There's not even that much change in the dialogue, which only ever consisted of terrified screams, confused cries of “why are you doing this to us?” and swearing in the first place. Wrecker is so repetitive that when our laptop rebooted itself halfway through the film, we accidentally re-watched a whole ten minute chase sequence without realising that it was a segment of the film we’d already viewed.
All of the above, combined with some of the most witless decision making ever seen in a horror film, makes Wrecker a difficult one to recommend. If you've never seen any of the movies it so shamelessly imitates (for shame!) you may have a good time, otherwise, you're in for a long journey. It's fast, slick and lovely to look at, but there's absolutely nothing there beneath the hood.
WRECKER / CERT: TBC / DIRECTOR: MICHAEL BAFARO / SCREENPLAY: MICHAEL BAFARO, EVAN TAYLOR / STARRING: ANNA HUTCHISON, ANDREA WHITBURN, JENNIFER KOENIG, DON KNODEL / RELEASE DATE: TBC