Winnie the Pooh: Blood & Honey - Blu-ray Review

Michael Scott

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Winnie the Pooh: Blood & Honey


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Movie: :1star:
Video: :3.5stars:
Audio: :4stars:
Extras: :1star:
Final Score: :2stars:




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Movie

Oh boy, the world of copyrights is a twisted double edged sword, and one that I have mixed ideas about. On one hand I understand that a copyright allows a creator to capitalize on their work without being undercut by people who have invested NOTHING into said product. But at the same time recognize that in our modern day system we’ve allowed things to get out of control, allowing companies with big pockets to perpetually renew a copyright on something for nearly a CENTURY, stifling anything fresh and new that a different set of creative eyes could afford. But at the same time when something enters the public domains, it’s a rare instance where someone can actually do just that. Usually films and creative characters entering the public domain are treated as something cheap to copy and dump on the market instead of of what we would HOPE would happen. But when something as iconic as Winnie the Pooh (and also recently the Steamboat Willie depiction of Mickey Mouse) enters the public domain you can be SURE that somebody somewhere is going to go fully insane and make something off the wall (or invoke rule #34 of the internet, but that’s a given), and nothing is as insane and off the wall as turning Pooh Bear and the creatures of 100 Acre Woods into serial killers.

The film opens up with a grim narration describing how Christopher Robin (Nikolai Leon) was once naively friends with a group of half beast half mutant forest creatures in the 100 Acre woods, very similar to the A.A. Milne stories we grew up on. And much like the stories endings, Christopher Robin was forced to give up his childish friends when he grew up and went to college, now Christopher is back with his wife to show her his childhood friends, but little does he know that after he left starvation drove them mad, forcing them to cannibalize Eeyore and change friendly woodland creatures into murderous monsters who hated Christopher Robin above all else.

Upon Christopher’s capture and the murder of his wife, the film segues directly into the present, with a group of young girls coming to the 100 Acre woods to engage in some R and R after Maria (Maria Taylor) had a run in with a stalker. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see where this is going, and go in that direction the movie does. Within short order the good looking women are nabbed, tortured, chopped into bits, and generally terrorized by Pooh Bear and Piglet, both of whom want nothing more than to inflict various forms of torture on their victims.

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Part of me is almost amazed at how horrible Blood & Honey is. On the surface I really wanted to love the film back when it came out in 2022. I mean, who doesn’t like subverting expectations of childhood books and movies and turning them on their ear? The idea of lovable “oh bother” Winnie the Pooh turning into a blood thirsty monster was something that I thought would be right up my alley as a horror nut. Unfortunately, director/writer Rhys Frake-Waterfield) had a $50,000 dollar shoe-string budget (and a frayed and worn shoe string at that) to play with, so the entire production feels like a competently done high school production, with Winnie the Pooh and Piglet being just bulked up actors wearing rubber pig and winnie the pooh masks running around chasing our nubile young female victims.

On the other hand, I almost have to give it to Frake-Waterfield. The guy made $5.2 million dollars off a $50,000 budget, and actually made it look competent in the filming department. The real drawback wasn’t just the cheap masks and the lack of anything remotely akin to proper CGI, but the HORRIBLE dialog, the abysmal direction, and the over use of cliched horror tropes without being even remotely satirical. I mean, we have buxom red heads going topless because the plot asked for it, gory deaths without any emotion behind them, and an ending that lends itself towards a possible sequel that inevitably came (released about 2 weeks ago actually, and given the fact that it made so much money off of a next to nothing budget, the sequel’s budget was amplified by a factor of 10). This is a movie that got 5 Raspberry awards, had every youtube horror fanatic loathing it, and generally felt like “why the bleep was this even MADE”? Personally, I can’t answer that question either, as I’ve been asking myself the same query.




Rating:

Not Rated by the MPAA




Video: :3.5stars:
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I didn’t realize it, but Scream Factory had actually released Blood & Honey back in October of 2023 as a limited edition Walmart Exclusive Steelbook, so this will carry the same video encode for the mainstream release that this edition is. The AVC encoded image does reasonably well with detail levels, although it is stylized with a heavily textured and desaturated look to it. The entire film is utterly gray and flat, with bursts of color inside the cabin in the woods (no, not the much better film of the same name) where reds and blues are allowed to minorly pop a bit. Otherwise gray and some weird dusky ambers dominate the picture. The end result is a film that does “ooooook” with details, but never anything stupendous, and most likely intentional so as to make the obviously cheap masked villains at least look SOMEWHAT reasonable to the rest of the picture. Blacks are a bit murky, and there is some artifacting present such as banding and some ringing around characters.









Audio: :4stars:
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The sound fares a bit better than the video, giving us a competently done horror sound track that reverberates with some strong power and excellent use of surrounds. You can hear the squeal of piglet in the side channels, or the rattling of chains scraping the floor in the wooden home of Winnie the Pooh quite easily. Bass response is solid, with good boom when cars slam into characters, or the rumble of the ominous score. On the flip side, the dynamic range is actually pretty slim, with the track feeling like it’s on the same wave length the entire time. It’s not a horrible thing, but it does squash some of the dynamics a good bit and makes this feel a bit mono in nature. All in all, a good surround mix that does way better than expected for a film on $50,000 budget.












Extras: :1star:
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• Something's Wrong With Piglet" - Making Winnie The Pooh: Blood And Honey
• Original Theatrical Trailer












Final Score: :2stars:

Can you tell that Winnie the Pooh: Blood & Honey was not my cup of tea? On one hand I really admire the hilarity and sheer willpower it took to take a beloved IP like Winnie the Pooh and try and make a slasher film out of it, but the execution was just abysmal. I wanted to like this movie sooooooooooo bad, but the film just made it nigh impossible. That being said, Frake-Waterfield competently shot the picture as best he could and it looks like he’s made a sequel, which very well may turn my opinion around considering I’ll eat up just about anything in the horror category. But for this, this is ONLY for the hardcore fans who have to have this as a novelty. Otherwise run away in more terror than the film’s victims.


Technical Specifications:

Starring: Nikolai Leon, Maria Taylor, Natasha Rose Mills, Amber Doig Thorne
Directed by: Rhys Frake-Waterfield
Written by: Rhys Frake-Waterfield, A.A. Milne
Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1 AVC
Audio: English: DTS-HD MA 5.1, English DTS-HD MA 2.0
Subtitles: English SDH
Studio: Scream Factory
Rated: NR
Runtime: 84 minutes
Blu-Ray Release Date: April 9th, 2024
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Recommendation: For the fans ONLY

 
Last edited:

Asere

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Thanks for the review. I don't know why this movie gets mentioned so much online when we know it is terrible. I don't need to see it to confirm.
 

Todd Anderson

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Wow. 1 Star, eh? I know you don't enjoy handing those out!

Zero chance I'll ever watch this one...
 

Michael Scott

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Wow. 1 Star, eh? I know you don't enjoy handing those out!

Zero chance I'll ever watch this one...

oh yeah, I save 1 star reviews for something truly "special". and this is one of those "special" instances lol
 
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