Reviewed by

Christopher Armstead

So I’m watching director Christopher Smith’s somewhat offbeat horror movie ‘Severance’, which is quite good by the way, and observe the presence of a Black guy in the movie.  But being how this movie is British and not originating from America, this young director obviously doesn’t understand the standards that surround Black guys in this kind of flick.  Now not to spoil anything, but though the Black guy does buy it, he’s not among the first to go, which is relatively rare.  Also, the character of Billy (Babou Ceesay) actually served a purpose that went beyond saying ‘That’s what I’m talkin’ ‘bout!’ and bugging his eyes and saying ‘I don’t know about you, but I’m gettin’ outta heuh!’  This guy actually took charge for a little bit, showed some heart and some courage.  Mr. Smith, if you wish to succeed in this genre, and I’m sure you know success is measured by how you do over here in the states, and not over there on your little foul weather island, you will either learn how to use your Black guys, or don’t put them in your movie.  Just trying to help bro.

‘Severance’ is the tale of a group of executives for the weapons firm Palisades Holdings on one of those little retreat weekends.  This particular weekend is taking place in the former Eastern Block of Romania where it is rumored that the weapons that Palisades has provided is pretty much responsible for the change in government, and there could be some ill people who bar some serious resentment to these cats.  On their way to the cabin, there is some obstruction in the road which leads our team to redirect to some remote cabin, please cue creepy music.  Most everybody in our small crew think there’s something screwy going with the exception of our stupid team leader Richard (Tim McInnery).  Our team consist of The Ass Kisser (Andy Nyman),

The Hot Chick (Laura Harris), The Smart Guy (Ceesay), The Heroic looking dude (Toby Stephens), the pacifist (Claudie Blakely) and the Strung out Stoner (Danny Dyer).  Well, it would seem that some unseen force has pretty much rigged the woods as one big human trap, and one by one, our team finds themselves kind of dying off.  Naturally, the race is now on as our final survivors try to defeat their rather imposing enemy, and maybe get down to the truth behind the mystery.


Think of ‘Sevence’ as ‘The Office’ meets ‘Shaun of the Dead’ and I think you get a pretty good idea of the tone of Christopher Smith’s film.  It definitely follows the standard arc of a lot of survival horror movies, but is loaded with so much wry dry humor and wit, it could almost be called a comedy.  A black ass comedy, but a comedy nonetheless.  I don’t know this Christopher Smith guy, who co-wrote the film as well as directed it, but he may need to seek some professional help as you will be surprised at the some of the spots this dude was able to find ‘humor’.  Not wanting to spoil anything, but a discussion involving the guillotine ended up providing us with some laughs, Not to mention one of the Palisades rockets badly missing its intended target.  Now that was funny!  One question though, when the stoner was taking a whiz, he had his pants pulled all the way down so we could see his ass.  Does anybody really piss like that?  I suppose he was stoned.


The cast was quite good and given my descriptions of them, they obviously completely understood their roles and played them out to the hilt.  Kudos in particular go out to Andy Nyman and Danny Dyer who were very funny and over top in their respective roles.  Gore fiends, don’t think that this was an all out laugh fest as there were severed limbs, lopped of heads, knives in nuts, immolation, bullets in chest and human carvings galore.  ‘Severance’ probably isn’t the scariest movie around, and the villain wasn’t all that great, but for good reason.  Also, it was disappointing that Laura Harris didn’t show us her loverely breastest, though there were some to be seen for those who need that kind of thing.  But all in all, in the relatively new category of what I suppose is ‘Horror – Comedy’, ‘Severance’ is a one fine entry. 

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