Aside from the fun time I had with Sharknado 2: The Second One, I don’t have any first-hand experience with The Asylum. I do know that they are [in]famous for their mockbuster films that have mimicked some of the most popular genre films to come out. They also have made some noise, in more recent years, with their SyFy channel original series, “Z Nation.” With all of that said, I thought it was the perfect time to get another taste of what the indie film production company had to offer. That’s where Jared Cohn’s werewolf flick, Little Dead Rotting Hood, comes in!
A small town is suddenly overrun by a pack of wolves who seem to be taking their territory back from the encroaching citizens. That is the least of anyone’s worries, however. As the body count rises, the local sheriff (Eric Balfour, Texas Chainsaw Massacre , Backcountry) and his deputies soon realize that they are dealing with a much bigger problem — one that you only hear about in fairy tales…
The Asylum is known for their over-the-top renditions of the some of the biggest titles released at any given time. Some films that they have capitalized on are Edge of Tomorrow, The Expendables, Hercules, and Avengers: Age of Ultron. While I have never seen any of their takes on those blockbusters, I figured it was about time to sink my teeth into another piece of work from them… no pun intended.
Little Dead Rotting Hood actually impressed me way more than I had expected. The acting was well above average and the overall look of the film was very well done. It is clear that the production value of the company has definitely gone up in the last few years.
The cast consists of a mix of stars, both familiar and not-so-familiar, at least to me. The best performance was delivered by our lead protagonist, Eric Balfour, playing sheriff Adam. Apparently Eric Balfour is no stranger to low-budget, made-for-television flicks, having starred in films like Rise of the Gargoyles and Dinoshark. He was a great choice for the lead ‘good guy,’ certainly helping to steer this film into a more sincere direction. Oddly enough, the weakest performance was delivered by the film’s main draw, Bianca Santos (Ouija).
There was little to no real emotion from Santos, kind of ruining the mood the film had already put me in, while also diminishing some of the seriousness director Cohn and his team had created. I would have been okay with her acting, if she were a lesser character, but having her as the titular ‘hero’ may have been a bad choice by Little Dead Rotting Hood‘s casting director.
Little Dead Rotting Hood is supposed to be a modern-day take on the ever-popular tale of ‘Little Red Riding Hood,’ but frankly speaking, it is a werewolf movie through and through. The best part about that is the fact that The Asylum went the extra mile here and enlisted the help of dog trainers and real, trained wolves. No CGI wolves were seen throughout the film’s 89 minutes and I thank The Asylum greatly for that. Of course, being the film that it is, there was no true way to stay away from visual effects completely. That’s where the sub-par special effects come in. Honestly, most of the visual effects displayed throughout Rotting Hood were actually executed really well. It’s when we are introduced to the opposing side’s leader — the den mother — that we are finally met with poor effects work.
The transformation scenes, even that of the den mother, herself, were still leaning toward the impressive side of things, but once the full-bodied antagonist was on screen, I was highly disappointed. Still, it was not enough to really ruin the film for me, as the entire premise was rather silly to begin.
Little Dead Rotting Hood is not the ‘epic’ film the home release artwork promises, but it is definitely worthy of a watch by horror and werewolf fans alike. The script is decent with a fair amount of character development, the acting is great overall, and the practical effects and use of real wolves is impressive. If you’re a fan of indie horror and enjoy the work of The Asylum, you should certainly check this one out! It is available on DVD now from The Asylum Home Entertainment and Cinedigm.
I give Little Dead Rotting Hood 2.5 girl zombie corpse-like-things out of 5.