A ‘home invasion’ horror of sorts, White Settlers tells the story of a young couple who come under attack from masked men in their remote Scottish house.
The movie stars Pollyanna McIntosh and Lee Williams as a married couple named Sarah and Ed. The pair have had enough of the stresses of city life (London) and want to live somewhere more peaceful.
It looks like they’ve found it in a run-down farmhouse in Scotland, one with an unfortunate history. The previous owner had died in the house and because of mortgage arrears the bank took the house when it should have gone to his sons. This conversation between the couple and the estate agent makes it fairly obvious just who is going to come a-knocking.
Ed and Sarah decide to buy the house and at first everything seems great that is until they get some late night visitors. A group of men all wearing pig masks break in and attack the pair. Sarah manages to escape their grasp but Ed isn’t so lucky.
In the middle of nowhere and desperate to save her husband, Sarah is forced to fight for her survival.
While White Settlers lacks originality, it makes up for that by being an atmospheric watch. The political tone is understated too, small references to the location of the house in relation to a famous English and Scottish battle. This makes it feel fairly fresh even if it’s far from that.
It builds well spending enough time with Sarah and Ed to make their relationship feel real so when they come under attack it’s easier to care about them. Their confusion of just who these people are is shared with the viewer and it’s never explicitly stated what they are after. Although it’s fairly clear it’s about the house.
It does begin to run out steam in the latter part as it slows painfully down culminating in a pretty silly ending. The kind of ending that can be picked apart in mere seconds. One that makes you wonder just what the point of it all was.
Still, home invasion horror rarely results in great films. While White Settlers isn’t that, it is entertaining enough to be worth a recommendation.
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The Final Score - 6/10