Outcast was definitely better than I had expected it to be. The film tells the story of a woman and her son hiding out in a Scotland slum from would-be killers that have tracked them from Ireland. Things become complicated further when the son becomes the love interest of a beautiful young neighbor, and the witchcraft-practicing mother has to protect her son from what she considers a number of threats.
The film was shot well, with good cinematography and color correction. The film was shot on location in Edinburgh, and the visuals are kept dreary to stay in sync with the theme of the movie. The film is light on gore, but there's enough to satisfy most horror fans. The audience isn't given much of the film's "monster" throughout most of the movie, which seems to help make this a film just as much about the characters as offering up scares.
One of the best aspects of the film, though, is the cast. I became a fan of Scottish actress Kate Dickie after watching her performance in Red Road back in 2006, and she doesn't disappoint in Outcast as the overprotective mother. The absolutely gorgeous Hanna Stanbridge makes a great film debut with Outcast as Petronella, neighbor to the mysterious couple practicing ancient magic next door. The remainder of the cast is rounded out by seasoned film veterans from Scotland and Ireland.
My first complaint about the movie was that there wasn't enough backstory. As the film progresses, you learn more about the ancient Celtic magic being practiced, but you are never given the full picture. It's hard to completely understand how all the puzzles fit together, or the significance of some of the characters (such as the man who must give permission for the hunters to search for the beast in Edinburgh).
The only other problem that I had with Outcast was that it wasn't completely original. While I had never seen a film focused on Celtic magic, the plot itself seemed to borrow from a few other movies. Outcast seems to borrow a few elements from Let the Right One In, but it certainly will remind horror fans of Stephen King's 1992 film Sleepwalkers. There's a son that changes into a beast, on the run from town to town with his overprotective mother. While the two movies aren't identical, it would have been nice to see a completely new spin on the concept.
Overall, I thought Outcast was a good film to watch. It was certainly shot and cast better than most straight to video horror flicks that I'm used to, with a slightly better story. If you're a horror fan, it's definitely worth a watch.