An experiment with the occult goes horribly wrong in 1950s England. “Gloriously Lovecraftian” says SIMON BALL, as he looks at The Rizen (2017).
TITLE: The Rizen
RELEASED: June 19th 2017
STARRING: Laura Swift (Frances), Christopher Tajah (Baughman), Patrick Knowles (Briggs), Sally Phillips (The Suited Woman), Julian Rhind-Tutt (Blast Door Scientist), Bruce Payne (Admin), Adrian Edmondson (Reporter)
WRITER/DIRECTOR: Matt Mitchell

It’s 1955 and British scientists have attempted to create the ultimate Cold War weapon of mass destruction utilising captured Nazi occult lore. Naturally it has all gone hideously wrong and that why a bandage swathed figure is dragging Frances (Laura Swift) along one of those claustrophobic dark secret underground bunker corridors.
Fortunately Frances is a bit tasty with self-defence and biffs her tormentor with a rock before teaming up with fellow survivors scientist Baughman (Christopher Tajah) and Private Soldier Briggs (Patrick Knowles). None of them know how they got there but as they dodge the formerly human inhabitants of the bunker their memories start to clear they realise that they may not be who they thought they were and it’s up to them to shut the experiment down before the gathering occult forces destroy the world.

The Rizen 2017 nicely evokes that golden age of British sci-fi when the government could just throw National Servicemen at any problem, through not just the props, wardrobe and hair styles, but also through the spot on portrayal of the demeanour and mannerisms that you find in 1950s British film. The supporting cast, many of whom are better known for comedic roles are excellent; particularly the spectacularly creepy Sally Phillips and Adrian Edmondson (they should both make more horror movies) and the SFX and creature prosthetics are nicely restrained, although there are gallons of gore splashed about.
Shot partly in the Kelvedon Secret Bunker, The Rizen is gloriously Lovecraftian and although its not a million miles away from Resident Evil, it’s a Resident Evil with a very British stiff upper lip

Simon Ball
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