To say this film is difficult to watch is an understatement.
Phillip Escott and Craig Newman’s joint effort focusses on an autistic teenager who is attacked by three thugs from his local school.
The first thing I have to say, is despite the disturbing subject matter, Cruel Summer is beautifully shot. Using real set locations, you really get to take in the beauty of the countryside, whilst knowing that something truly horrific is going to happen.
That was the main crux which made me feel uncomfortable, as we know that everything that happens builds up to this truly evil act.
Emmerdale’s Danny Miller really goes to town as the irredeemable chief antagonist Nicholas who basically bullies Calvin and Julia to help him seek out Danny, the aforementioned autistic teenager.
While the other two have glimmers of hope, Nicholas is like a great white shark homing in on fresh prey – nothing will stop him doing what he set out to do.
The most heartbreaking part, is the fact it could have all been prevented if the right people would have spoken up before it was too late.
Although not quite on the twisted level of Eden Lake, this is a gritty British horror to admire rather than enjoy.