F (4 stars)


British ‘hoody horror’ thriller in which a group of teachers defend themselves from a gang of murderous schoolkids

(18) 78min

F is the latest in a line of peculiarly British ‘hoody horror’ films that also include Eden Lake and Heartless. English writer/director Johannes Roberts’ effort is the best yet thanks to his smart script, crisp direction and a fine performance by David Schofield, who plays an Eng Lit teacher who’s terrorised by a gang of faceless youths one night after school. Troublesome pupils and an education system that panders to their parents have brought Schofield’s Mr Anderson to the end of his tether; it’s a backstory that generates emotional clout (and there’s a nice literary analogy to King Lear).

First and foremost, however, Roberts is concerned with delivering genre thrills. He has called F his homage to slasher movie pioneer John Carpenter, and certainly Robert’s reliance on atmosphere and shocks and his eschewing of blood and gore is reminiscent of the past master’s work, most conspicuously Assault on Precinct 13. B+ for effort. Extras: making of doc, audio commentary.

Selected release, Fri 17 Sep.