Palace of Horror DVD Review:http://www.palaceofhorror.com/2008/04/07/the-outpost/
Horror film fans are used to seeing films that sound great on the back of the DVD case but turn out to be hugely disappointing. That makes finding those little diamonds in the rough that much more satisfying. Outpost fits into this category. It’s a direct to DVD film that I came across without any fanfare and was pleasantly surprised. It’s a small budget to be sure but done with enough skill that you never notice.
Ray Stevenson plays “DC” the leader of a team of multi-national mercenaries. The team is hired to escort a businessman on a surveying expedition into a dangerous, war-torn part of some unnamed East European country. The diverse mercenary team includes members from all over the world. DC is British, Prior (Richard Brake) is American, Taktarov is Russian, Cotter is Russian, etc…Hunt takes them into a remote wilderness era where they reach their goal, a long abandoned Nazi underground outpost.
Inside they find several dead bodies and one survivor who is in a catatonic state. Hunt reveals his true mission to DC. This outpost was used for a secret Nazi experiment. A machine was created that could warp space and time and transport soldiers across great distances and also make them invulnerable. Hunt has come to locate the machine for his employers. His activation of the machine brings dire consequences for the team, however. The long-thought dead Nazi soldiers who manned the bunker were in reality caught in a sort of suspended animation time anomaly. The catatonic survivor turns out to be the former Nazi commanding officer and even when Prior puts a bullet in his skull he doesn’t die. Are his troop’s ghosts? Zombies? Whatever they are, they’ve come to reclaim their outpost and bullets are useless against them. DC and his men have to put up enough resistance to allow Hunt to figure out how to use the Nazi machine to send them back to Hell or wherever it is they came from.
When I first picked up Outpost I figured it was just an action film and in many ways it is. It combines military action with horror and does it exceedingly well. The performances of all of the soldiers are quite good, especially Stevenson. Best known for his role in the TV series “Rome”, Stevenson has been tapped to play Frank Castle, The Punisher in the next film in that series. All the men do a good job of conveying the stress and terror of their situation. They are trapped in the bunker, surrounded by woods filled with spectral soldiers. The bunker itself is dark and creepy, particularly the room where the dead bodies are located. The special effects are slight but they do the job. The commanding Nazi Officer, his face ashen and gaunt, exudes evil.
There are a few plot holes such as just how the commanding officer was still alive in physical form but this is such an effective little horror that you can overlook some minor glitches. There’s not much in the way of extras although the DVD does come with some deleted scenes.