Click here to return to the main site.

Blu-ray Review

DVD cover



Starring: Jonathan French, Leila Sykes, Ben Caplan and Conor Dwane
Distributor: Acorn Media International
RRP: £19.99

5 036193 020513

Certificate: 15
Release Date: 28 February 2022

Isaac is an out of work man who struggles to recall a traumatic moment in his recent past. His shady friend/landlord Barret offers a lifeline to get him on his feet financially. The job is to babysit Barret’s adult niece Olga for a few days. If it isn’t enough of a condition that the old house wherein Olga resides is on an otherwise uninhabited small island – frightening for a man who can’t swim – but the real caveat is that he must be locked into a chained harness restricting his movement to certain rooms to protect the psychologically disturbed Olga, who is plagued by a gruesome past. An edgy game of cat and mouse takes place between the two, with Isaac attempting to turn the tables. But everyone has a past. Who is the real innocent? And what part does Barret play in it all...?

It's not surprising that the cover of this release sells the product on the creepy-looking hare. Do you remember those wind-up monkeys which beat on a drum? This is the same sort of thing but with a hare looking like a cross between the humanoid one in Donnie Darko and the old moth-eaten but, frankly, terrifying Hartley Hare from children’s TV's Pipkin's from way back. It is truly the most effective asset to the film, utilised as a trigger of psychic activity. So, yes, there is a hint of ghostly presence, but it plays a small part compared with the mainstay psychological horror. I’m not certain that Caveat squeezes the required tension out of a potentially claustrophobic situation; however, it does surprise you with unexpected edgy moments. One such example is when Isaac escapes into the boarded area in the basement. Olga is on the other side and he needs to keep quiet, but that is when he sees the body next to him which appears to have moved every time he looks at it. His reaction is both humorous and chilling.

Caveat is the latest in a number of mostly impressive horror releases from Shudder. It should be applauded for being original in its format and compelling viewing. The story really ramps-up when the amnesiac Isaac begins to recall his mind-blocked past. This is when we ultimately learn more about the characters, and we discover that one is innocent, one guilty, and one guilty through innocence. I won’t spoil it by saying which is which. I would say this is well worth watching – even though I have questions about the ending. I look forward to reviewing more Shudder Original releases.

Special Features include a Director’s Commentary (Damian McCarthy), a Producer’s Commentary and Storyboards.


Ty Power

Buy this item online