Three young Americans travel to a border town just inside Mexico and get tangled up with a vicious cult of Satan worshipers. Sounds a lot like Eli Roth's Hostel or John Stockwell's (ugh) Turistas, doesn't it? That's what I thought at first, but once I realized that Zev Berman'sBorderland was based on actual (and truly horrific) events from 1989, I had a whole new perspective on the project. (That fact that Mr. Berman was actually in Mexico went these horrible events went down, and was even questioned by the Mexican authorities, adds a whole new layer of creepiness to the flick.) Borderland is a grim, gruesome and impressively well-mounted piece of genre filmmaking, and one that's a whole lot more unsettling when you realize it was based on an actual massacre.
Rider Strong, Jake Muxworthy and Brian Presley play a trio of recent high school grads who decide to drive down south for a night of drunkenness and debauchery, but when one of the crew gets kidnapped by a gang of Satan-lovin' drug runners, things go from mildly uncomfortable to downright terrifying. As the two other guys look around, question the (predictably unhelpful) authorities, and run up against some local villains, a former cop (now disgraced, of course) does all he can to shed some light on the subject. Of course nobody believes the burnout's raving stories about homicidal "satanicos" -- or they know about the criminals but are simply too terrified to help out.