Film Review: Hangar 10

Three lost hikers run afoul of spooky goings-on in this U.K. faux found-footage thriller, which breaks no new ground but delivers some creepy moments.
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Happy couple Gus and Sally (Robert Curtis and Annie Salt) are off to England's Rendlesham Forest—the site of a notorious UFO sighting in 1980—to look for Saxon gold. Gus has already found several historically significant coins and has a sterling reputation in the close-knit community of hobbyists who spend their weekends using metal detectors to methodically search likely areas for ancient artifacts.
 
Unable to obtain permission to scout a piece of wooded private property for artifacts, Gus bulls ahead anyway, dragging Sally and their longtime pal Jake (Danny Shayler), a documentary filmmaker, along for the ride. All they need to do is hunt at night, Gus says, and they'll be fine. But when they wake up after a long, unproductive night in the rain, their car is gone. Gus figures they're better off cutting straight through the woods rather than staying on the winding paths that eventually lead to the main road–they didn't bring much along in the way of supplies because they weren't planning to be out in the wilderness for long–and he's wrong on that score as well.
 
Soon they're lost, hungry, cold and scared half to death by the mysterious lights and strange sounds that assault them after dark. Gus insists the others are letting their imaginations run away with them, but the elusive road remains forever a day away and the nights are full of unnerving sounds, lights that act like nothing in nature, and the kind of shadows whose sole raison d'être appears to be scaring the bejesus out of unwary idiots who go out in the woods at night.
 
But for all its familiar elements, Hangar 10—shot on location in the real Rendlesham Forest—manages to be pretty damned creepy in much the same way as the underrated Apollo 18 (2011) and Banshee Chapter (2013), and first-time film actor Shayler in particular manages to make Jake far less annoying than the average post-Blair Witch Project idiot who walks blithely into a firestorm of paranormal crap and takes longer than he should to start back-peddling.
 
Fledgling writer-director-cinematographer Daniel Simpson–whose only previous feature was the little-seen Spiderhole (2010)–directs with a sure hand, and while Hangar 10 is unlikely to attract much non-genre viewer attention, it's a tidy calling card that should open doors for Simpson.

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