Movie review: Don't Go in the Woods

Staff Writer
Columbus Alive

If there were a Venn diagram of the target audience for actor Vincent D’Onofrio’s directorial debut, “Don’t Go in the Woods,” it would focus on the part where the circles for “slasher movies,” “indie rock” and “musicals” intersect.

Admittedly, that may be a pretty specific audience. If you land in it, it’s a low-budget gem. If you don’t, it will get a little grating.

The plot is familiar. An indie rock band travels into the woods to work on a new album in isolation. These woods, of course, have a scary history. Songs are sung. Murders are committed.

This bizarre genre mish-mash — the slasher-musical — isn’t played for laughs, though it’s intentionally weird.

Shot on the cheap and with nonprofessional actors, the DIY angle is charming. Also, the songs are actually pretty fantastic — even if there’s a laughable number of “singing around the campfire” scenes.

It’s nothing if not unique. If this odd stew floats your boat, I highly recommend a big-screen viewing.

"Don't Go in the Woods"

Opens Friday at the Gateway

3 stars out of 4