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Sausages The Making Of Dog Soldiers Main

"Sausages: The Making of Dog Soldiers" Book Review

Written by Daniel Benson

Published by Encyclopocalypse Publications

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Written by Janine Pipe
2022, 426 pages, Non-Fiction
Released on 13th May 2022

Review:

Neil Marshall's Dog Soldiers is, hands down, my favourite horror movie. I don't remember the first time I saw it, but hot damn I've seen it so many times since. It's also one of my favourites to show my kids when they get to an appropriate age. With 2022 being the 20th Anniversary of the film (feel old yet?) and a celebratory 4K re-release on its way from Second Sight Films, it was only right that some should make this particular project a reality. And that person is Dog Soldiers super-fan, author and Horror DNA contributor Janine Pipe.

Tricky doesn't even begin to cover it when you have to review something created by your colleagues. What if it's shit? Lacklustre fan service that only deserves a couple of stars at best? The struggle is real. Fortunately, there's no struggle here. Janine has delivered a fantastic work that should be on the bookshelf of any horror fan who reads and every Dog Soldiers fan.

No corners have been cut in the creation of Sausages: The Making of Dog Soldiers; Janine has made sure that as many people as possible, who were connected to the film, have been interviewed wherever feasible. And then there are the bookends of a foreword by Joe Dante and afterword from John Landis, because if you are writing a book about a werewolf movie, you want input from the two directors of the other two most significant werewolf movies of the last half-century. And, of course, there's an introduction by the man himself, director Neil Marshall. As it happens, it's more than just an introduction; he's a constant voice throughout the book and gave himself up for open access throughout its creation.

Logically structured, the book covers every stage of the filmmaking process, starting with pre-production and casting, where we start to get some fascinating tidbits of information thrown out there. For instance, can you imagine Dog Soldiers with Jason Staham instead of Kevin McKidd as Cooper? Simon Pegg instead of Darren Morfitt as Spoon? Jason Isaacs instead of Sean Pertwee as Sgt Wells? Well, that's what we could have ended up with if the initial casting choices had gone the right way. If you want to find out why Simon Pegg didn't get the gig... well, you're just going to have to read the book.

The bulk of this work is a scene-by-scene retelling of the film, punctuated by behind-the-scenes information, cast and crew trivia and anecdotes. You might be thinking "why would I want to read the film when I've seen it", but believe me, you do. You really do. Janine recounts every scene in the film in a way that is familiar but not perfunctory, and the addition of all the extra facts and stories make it a joy to read. If you only have time to read one section of this book, make it the one that covers the movie. Then go back and read the other chapters. No one reads just the middle section of a book for goodness' sake.

In addition to the sterling work that's gone into the text, there are dozens of behind-the-scenes photos, script extracts and storyboard panels. Admittedly these displayed very small in my advance/unproofed copy, but I would love to take another look at them in glorious full size.

Sausages: The Making of Dog Soldiers is a gold standard in film journalism and is absolutely essential for any fan of the movie as well as being highly recommended for anyone with an interest in low-budget film-making. Buy it now.

Grades:

Overall: 5 star rating Cover
Buy from Amazon US.
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Buy from Amazon UK.

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About The Author
Daniel Benson
UK Editor / Webmaster
Fuelled mostly by coffee and a pathological desire to rid the world of bad grammar, Daniel has found his calling by picking holes in other people's work. In the rare instances he's not editing, he's usually breaking things in the site's back end.
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