Brought to us by the husband and wife team of Mark Duplass and Katie Aselton, Black Rock is a lean, taught thriller about three childhood friends who believe they are alone on an island camping trip. Abby (Aselton), Sarah (Kate Bosworth) and Lou (Lake Bell) have been friends since the age of 10;Sarah has brought the tree of them together in the hopes of resolving a disagreement between Abby and Lou.
The three women are startled by the appearance of three men,Henry, Derek and Alex, who are also camping on the, otherwise, isolated island. Lou recognizes Henry from childhood and the six of them gather around a campfire and get to know one another. While Abby and Henry are in the woods, Sarah and Lou learn that the three men were “disarmed and discharged” from the army 18 days ago. When Abby and Henry disagree about what kind of “fun” they will be having, an unfortunate accident instigates a battle of survival between the sexes.
It’s interesting to see the men’s obvious PTSD manifest and inform their behavior while the women must find their “inner cavewoman” if they want to leave the island alive. The script is bare bones and the movie has been attacked for it’s simplicity, but that’s it’s main charm. No fancy gimmicks, no ridiculous backstory, no CGI gore, no gratuitous violence against women:just a simple, basic thriller.