Director – Sam Qualiana (Snow Shark: Ancient Snow Beast)
Starring – Sam Qualiana, Andrew Elias (Return to Nuke ‘Em High Vol. 1), and Lynn Lowry (Basement Jack)
Release Date – 2014
Rating – 3/5
Tagline – “The woods want blood”
At the end of 2012 I discovered a local filmmaker that lived just a short distance from me. At that point he had been making indie horror flicks for almost a decade and I was a little pissed that I was just now learning about him. That filmmaker, Eamon Hardiman, had created a number of films that starred Sam Qualiana. I befriended Sam on Facebook and learned that he, himself was a director.
At this time he was currently working on what I thought was a cryptozoological horror flick called The Legend of Six Fingers that was being produced by Gregory Lamberson. Lamberson is the man responsible for the 1988 splatter flick Slime City (read my review here). This kinda excited me and I waited patiently to see it. I reached out to Sam and he was nice enough to send me in the right direction to get a copy to review and for that I thank you!
**Spoiler Alert**The film follows a documentary filmmaker and a camera man as they visit a rural community to interview the locals about a rash of small pet murders. The two have a hard time working together but force through their shortcomings to finish the project. The two visit an elderly couple and learn some about the local legends. It is here that they learn about a creature the Native Americans call Six Fingers.
The two venture deep into the woods where they cross paths with two hitchhikers and then soon after set up camp. They head back out to investigate and come across the creature. They film the beast and head back to camp where they find the carcass of one of the hitchhikers. The two flee from their camp only to cross paths with Six Fingers again. However, Six Fingers does not attack the two and simply follows them.
The two panic and run away only to discover they are now lost. The two rush through the woods and after 24 hours they stop and attempt to force the beast to run away. This backfires and the documentary filmmaker is killed by Six Fingers. The cameraman runs away and after several hours is able to escape the woods and finds the elderly man whose wife told them about Six Fingers. He then learns a dark and horrible secret about the elderly couple and Six Fingers**Spoiler Alert
I personally have a soft spot for crypto horror. I have seen more movies about killer sasquatch and yetis than I care to count. Most of these films are the same in story when compared together. A group of people in the woods get brutally slaughtered by the beasts. Simple as that. These films never try to reinvent the legend for fear of a backlash among crypto fans. That is what I really liked about The Legend of Six Fingers. The film did not set out to give us another bigfoot/yeti/skunk ape flick. Instead, Qualiana gave us an entirely new legend and expanded it from there. I also feel that he set himself up with what could be a basis for a series of films.
The acting in this one is solid by the entire cast but I have a hard time judging this sort of thing when it comes to a found footage film. It is hard to really get a feel for the acting talent when the characters are speaking directly to the camera. The story for this one is great. The fact Qualiana is able to create his own cryptid with it’s own mytho that has the power to grow even bigger is nothing short of genius. I wish more creature features would take this route. Hell, I wish the indie horror scene had more creature features.
Finally, the film does have a few on screen kills and a ton of special effects but they are not that great. The beast looked a little on the goofy side but if we saw it less it would have been more effective. However, if that was the case then horror fans would have bitched that we didn’t see it enough. The kills were bloody but the special effects for those were on the same page as the beast itself. A little better kill scenes and a better costume would have went a long way. Overall, The Legend of Six Fingers is a bold creature feature that has the strength to become an indie series franchise. The film has a strong back story and Qualiana is able to actually create a great myth. Check this one out because it is worth a watch.