From the creators of the cult hit, Dead Birds, comes the psychological, horror film Red Sands, which follows the story of a group of U.S. soldiers who face a deadly supernatural force after they destroy an ancient statue. ... more »Present-day Afghanistan. As continuing battles rage in the war-torn country, a unit of U.S. soldiers are dispatched to seize and control a strategic road that runs past an abandoned stone house. En route, the soldiers discover an ancient stone statue hidden deep within an ancient ravine. Using the relic for target practice, they destroy it, unwittingly releasing a vengeful supernatural force that is about to wage a horrifying war on them in this taut, action-packed, psychological thriller.« less
Deidra C. (Deidra670) from GARRETT, KY Reviewed on 10/2/2010...
RED SANDS was an intriguing mix of horror, suspense and military action. I admit I came into this expecting alot. The creators of this film were also responsible for DEAD BIRDS which is, as far as I'm concerned, a horror classic. So, was RED SANDS up to the challenge? Unfortunately, it didn't quite make it.
The plot was interesting. A group of soldiers are stationed in Afghanistan and during a routine patrol, one of them uses some ancient statutes for target practice. Not a bright idea. The soldiers are then sent to patrol a remote area and stay there until further notice. But something is wrong with this place. Things quickly go from bad to worse.
RED SANDS held my attention and it was an admirable stab at military horror and a little known Afghan mythology. Putting my prejudice and comparisons to DEAD BIRDS aside, RED SANDS is a good way to pass the time on a Saturday night.
Just remember to be careful with you wish for. Someone may be listening.
1 of 1 member(s) found this review helpful.
Melissa B. (rxrcds) Reviewed on 3/10/2010...
A mediocre military paranormal horror flick loosely involving the Djinn. A cocky military runt decides to shoot at an image carved into the side of a mountain. This releases a Djinn and each soldier eventually comes to a gruesome demise while the Djinn makes them hallucinate reliving some of their worst memories. This was just eh. If it's on SyFy and nothing else is on then why not but nothing to actively seek out.
A very uneven film. A mixed bag.
Paulo Leite | Lisbon, Portugal | 04/30/2009
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I think this project was very promising... and as my title says, it succeeds in some places while failing in others. Here's the story in 25 words or less: a group of soldiers in Afghanistan break an old statue and release a Djinn (an old spirit who hates humans). So they break the antique and go spend a few nights in a abandoned Afghan house in the middle of nowhere where they must secure the area. And the Djinn attacks...
Now, here are the good and bad things.
BAD - Most of the special effects are horrible... the Djinn at the end is laughable. Simply laughable. In my point of view, the producers/director made the big mistake of saving money at the end of the film (where in fact, they should deliver the goods). That's too bad.
GOOD - Tension. The screenplay does a nice job managing the tension between the men. The dialogs are great and some characters are believable (although some other characters are too stupid for us to create any empathy). And too bad the ending is so frustratingly cheap.
BAD - And the ending is cheap because, unfortunately, this is one of those films who start great and sinks towards the ending... probably because nobody could figure out how to deliver an ending that was truly original.
GOOD - The first half of the script. I think it is almost flawless. But after that, it cannot keep relying on just dreams and hallucinations. It has to deliver the goods... come on... this is a horror film!
BAD - The second half of the script. Ok, the Djin is around, the men are getting affected by the people they killed and the visions... but I kept thinking there was something missing: progression. The film keeps offering what it already gave us in the first half. And the Djinn attacks are lame... and the ending is lame... and it is all sad.
GOOD - Art direction, locations and cinematography. I do not know where the film was shot, but it convinced me. everything regarding these three domains seemed competent enough.
BAD - All the opportunities missed. I think this film could have been absolutely great. But it is underproduced and creatively underdeveloped.
Still I think the film is interesting enough to be recommended. I am sure the director is extremely talented and his next film will be great. And also, this film (even with all the bad things I've pointed) is miles above most horror films available today.
I could give it four stars... but as I said, if you promise something good, you better deliver it! If you don't, all the flaws are twice as noticeable.
Still I recommend it."
Best thriller I've seen in a while.
AmazonUser | Berkeley | 02/28/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Very good stuff. I was expecting an entertaining slasher movie based on the cover, but what I got was much better. This is not a silly slasher movie but actually a very intelligent and suspenseful supernatural flick. It must have been on a tight budget given the crude special effects, but these are a small part of the movie and don't spoil the overall creepiness. Writing, acting, and directing are excellent. Don't watch it if you don't want to be scared."
Good creepy thriller
MovieBuff | Chicago | 02/26/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Best supernatural thriller movie I've seen in a long time. It had our less-than-sensitive puppy growling at the TV (and the humans were scared too)."
RED SANDS is a good Horror movie, dragged down by small fail
Saint Thomas | Kent, Ohio | 04/27/2010
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I don't know about you guys but I'm a pretty big fan of Alex Turner's first film DEAD BIRDS. I remember being pleasantly surprised with the movie and it's become some what of a cult hit since it's release. It's not hard to see why. The acting, pacing and atmosphere were some of the best aspects of the film. All key ingredients to making a successful Horror movie. The movie RED SANDS continues Alex Turner's creative artistic vision more or less with some divided results.
Before I get into the movie at hand here, I just want to say that I wanted to like this movie. Even before I saw it. I was already a fan of Turner's work with DEAD BIRDS and following up from that movie, I thought the premise of his next film (RED SANDS) sounded pretty good. The idea, story and setting interested me. Naturally I went online and read about it before actually getting my own copy and what I saw was not good. Half the reviews on this site alone are negative and if the price I paid for this movie (below five bucks!!!) says anything, most people would avoid this movie like the plague! Still, I wanted to be the judge of that for myself.
Right off the bat I knew the special effects (more so, the CGI moments) were going to be horrible. So before actually watching the movie, I guess I was already prepared for disappointment in those regards. Still, I just wanted to watch it anyways. After finally seeing the movie, I would have to agree with some of the reviews on this site. The CGI effects during some moments are totally unacceptable. With that being said, everything else about this movie is actually pretty good. It's just a shame that a little more production couldn't have gone into the special effects.
The movie RED SANDS is about a group of military soldiers (during the early 2000's in Afghanistan) who are stationed at an abandoned farm house in the middle of the desert. Killing time, some of the soldiers take up target practice on an old statue in the middle of a canyon, breaking it and releasing (unknown to them) an evil demon. Tension rises among the men as the clarity of their mission becomes blurred, a sand storm blinds them, and the arrival of a mysterious Afghan woman complicates things further. Isolated and becoming crazy from the heat, the soldiers soon realize there is more to their bad situation than it would seem.
RED SANDS starts off pretty good, with excellent camera work, nice lens coloring, competent actors and a genuine feeling of dread. Another thing I liked about this movie is the original idea behind it. This isn't a predictable Horror movie and a lot of it feels honest and true. With that being said, most of those good aspects might be thrown right out the window for you, depending on how you feel about bad CGI. This movie doesn't have too many scenes where special effects are required, but a few moments at the end becomes jarringly obvious.
Everything else about this movie is well done, and then you have the horrible CGI Djinn monster at the end of the movie! I'm talking on the level of THE MUMMY movies from the late 90's and early 2000's! They're about as bad as something you might see on the SyFy Channel late at night. Actually, if the SyFy Channel made their movies anywhere as half as good as Alex Turner's RED SANDS, this movies short comings (in terms of the CGI) might become bearable. SyFy Channel, take note!
With my biggest problem aside, I actually liked this movie. It's not perfect but it was everything I thought it was going to be and in some cases, it exceeded my expectations. Going into the film knowing the CGI was horrible helped soften the blow, but some people might not be as forgiving as I am. I can understand why some people might be turned off by the special effects considering they're so awful. It just begs the question to the film makers, "why?" Everything else about this movie is excellent, why use such bad special effects? Someone must have rushed to get this movie pumped out on DVD, not caring about the final product. It's a shame because the director did such a bang up job with everything else.
Gore Hounds, I have to say it. Check it out. Despite my issues with the CGI, some of the other effects are pretty good. Gun shot wounds explode with blood the good 'ol fasion way (with blood packs) and some of the close up shots of the actual monster's mask was pretty well done. Also, there are some interesting camera tricks throughout the whole movie, adding to the over all creepy vibe. In the end, what you have here is a movie half good and half bad. I'm glad that I watched it and included it in my collection, other's might just yawn and roll their eyes into their heads. It's a shame too because RED SANDS isn't all that bad of a Horror film.
I don't know. Maybe I'm too forgiving? You be the judge.
Over and out."
bosley316 | Caledonia, Nova Scotia | 02/26/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I was tense through the last two thirds of this movie. Not the sort of over the top bloodbath that many expect from modern "horror" movies, but Red Sands has plenty of creepy scenes and is generally well crafted. Best of its kind I've seen in a while."