The Backwoods

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The Backwoods
Bosque de Sombras.jpg
Directed by Koldo Serra
Produced by Iker Monfort
Julio Fernández
Written by Jon Sagalá
Koldo Serra
Starring Gary Oldman
Virginie Ledoyen
Paddy Considine
Aitana Sánchez-Gijón
Music by Fernando Velázquez
Cinematography Unax Mendia
Edited by Javier Ruiz Caldera
Filmax Entertainment
Monfort Producciones
Distributed by Lionsgate
Filmax SA
Release date
  • 24 September 2006 (2006-09-24) (San Sebastián Film Festival)
  • 16 February 2007 (2007-02-16) (Spain)
Running time
97 minutes
Country Spain
United Kingdom
Language English

The Backwoods, alternately known in Spanish as Bosque de Sombras, is a 2006 Spanish-British thriller film directed and co-written by the Spanish director Koldo Serra.

Set in 1978 in the Basque Country, Northern Spain, The Backwoods tells the story of two married couples staying in an isolated house in the woods.[1] Once belonging to his Basque grandmother, Englishman Paul (Gary Oldman) has purchased the house as a holiday retreat for himself and his Spanish wife Isabel (Aitana Sánchez-Gijón) . They are joined by fellow Englishman Norman (Paddy Considine) and his wife Lucy (Virginie Ledoyen), who are hoping the holiday will help save their marriage. While out hunting, Norman and Paul discover a deformed girl locked away in an abandoned building; deciding to rescue her, they take her back to their holiday home. The following day, a group of armed local men come to the house searching for the girl, whom they claim is their niece.

Critics noted similarities between The Backwoods and earlier thrillers such as Deliverance and Straw Dogs.


Set in the summer of 1978, Lucy and Norman, a young married couple whose relationship is going through a rough patch, join Norman's boss, Paul, and his Spanish wife, Isabel, on holiday in Basque Country. Located in an isolated area in the middle of the forest, Paul's ancestral home seems the ideal spot for a quiet stay and the chance for Lucy and Norman to sort out their emotional problems. However, their peace is shattered when Paul and Norman discover a cabin in the forest in which a girl with ectrodactyly is imprisoned. Their attempts to take the girl to the police are hindered by the difficulties of the heavily wooded terrain and the intervention of a group of villagers who are determined to keep the girl locked away for good.



Based on six reviews, the film garnered an aggregate rating of 67% on the Rotten Tomatoes website.[2]


  1. ^ "THE BACKWOODS". Film4. Retrieved 1 June 2012. 
  2. ^ "Bosque de sombras (BackWoods) (2008)". Rotten Tomatoes. Flixster Inc. Retrieved 2 June 2012. 

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