Let’s be honest here friends – when you receive an online screener via email for a no-budget horror flick concerning a deaf-mute woman possessed by the spirit of a vengeful Apache warrior, you’re not going to be expecting much.

In fact, I’ll admit that when I popped the link on, I was wondering just how long it would be before the film outstayed its welcome.

But here’s the thing – it never did.

To be sure, Avenged is never going to pick up any awards, and a lot of the acting is strictly of the ‘you gets what you pays for’ variety, but as a slick, wildly gory and entertaining slice of horror hokum, writer/director/producer Michael Ojeda’s effort certainly hits the spot.

The film follows deaf-mute Zoe (Amanda Adrienne), who is driving across the States to the West Coast to shack up with her boyfriend Dane (Marc Anthony Samuel).

After a handful of stop-offs for impromptu selfies (which conveniently allow her fella to locate her potential whereabouts), Zoe unwittingly stumbles across a gang of lowlifes hunting down and killing a pair of Native Americans.

Deciding to get involved, Zoe soon finds herself being overpowered, tortured and raped by the gang – and then seemingly being knifed to death.

But that’s just the start of the story, as the introduction of a mystic soon sees Zoe returning from the grave to wreak justice, powered by the spirit of the aforementioned warrior.

From then on in Avenged is a tour-de-force of revenge as ‘Zoe’ takes her frustrations out on her brutalisers in a series of eye-popping set-pieces.

There’s a definite whiff of ‘I Spit On Your Grave’ here, and thankfully Ojeda has his black heart in the right place, ensuring the degradation of Zoe is played out in the sort of squalid, depressing vein it should – there are no kicks to be had from watching her suffer.

There are definite kicks to be had watching her fight back though, even if you do need a strong stomach at times, thanks to some mightily impressive gore effects (an entrails tug-of-war anyone?).

The bad guys are suitably scummy, Zoe is suitably sympathetic and the tone of the whole thing is handled well.

Ojeda also displays a nice eye for detail, and throws in plenty of stylish flourishes for good measure.

Avenged still can’t get away from the fact of being the type of film you have seen a number of times before (albeit with a twist), but that makes it no less enjoyable.

 

Rental Review: Avenged
3.5Overall Score
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About The Author

Simon Fitzjohn

Simon is a journalism tutor in London, who also just happens to be a movie fanatic, with a craving for the darker side of cinema. He has written two books, one on the horror films of director Bob Clark (2014) and the other on the history of the character Norman Bates (2015). His third book, on the work of British exploitation director Pete Walker, is due in 2017.