Not all low budget B movies are doomed to suck. Some actually have a decent story and good progression, but there is something about movie makers that try to stuff as many horror 'necessities' into their movie that it just gets mucked up. That would be a good assessment of this movie. I'd seen it before and scratched my head a lot (no I don't have dandruff) so I found it and decided to give it another try. Still a bit confused, afterward I looked it up and even the wiki explanation doesn't make much sense. It just mucks it up more. And the title doesn't help. What the hell does shallow ground have to do with ANYTHING that happens in this movie? And the poster phrase 'Don't dig too deep' is just asinine. Our story:
We start with the appearance in a small town that is essentially emptying out of a naked boy in the woods. He is covered head to toe with blood. There was continuity errors throughout this part as the journey through the woods to a soon to close sheriff's office since obviously this was not done in one take or even one day. It's hard to make a head to foot blood covered body look the same from take to take. And so it did not. There are parts where there is more of what I'm assuming is dirt mixed in with the blood, and one scene shows his back barely has any blood at all on it - in the next frame we see it is covered again. Oopsy. I felt for this guy, played by Rocky Marquette, as he had to be naked and goopy for the whole movie. What a trooper.
Anyway the gist is that this boy, who bleeds out and in at will (backwards flowing blood is just a cheap effect, they could have figured something else to do but meh). He shows up which of course causes the packing sheriff's crew to panic. They handcuff him to a chair and wait for the sheriff to come in. There's obviously past history between the sheriff and the female deputy but thankfully they don't elaborate. Whoever touches the blood is treated to visions of what people have done to others - a drunk in the cell is found out by the other deputy to actually have killed a girl and dumped her body so he shoots him. It being a movie, although the deputy's handcuffed at first (no rights read, no arrest) after other things happen he's let go (!?!). Anyone who touches the blood as the boy makes it flow sees either a victim of a violent crime or what they themselves have done to someone else. Now things are starting to get mucked up. Sigh.
We get backstory about the town - it had a brief increase of residents because a dam was being built. A man and his daughter died during the build, and now that the dam is finished, that is why most are now moving on. During all this, someone in a black cloak has been killing people in the woods. Every time that happens the boy acts - weird. I don't know how they told him to act, but it was just weird. And things get even more mucked up.
The father of one of the deputies in another city tells the small crew that apparently the dead are rising and seeking revenge for all those killed. They are coming to 'clear the books and make things right'. Uh, what? We've only seen the two and... never mind. So if the dead person was the only one killed it appears as itself, but if more than one were killed the dead person becomes a composite of everyone who died. The boy is one of those so each of his fingerprints are one of the victims (convenient that they all have fingerprints on file). Uh, what? I watched this movie three times and that still makes absolutely no sense. Continuing on so we can end this...
The killer is on the loose. Or if I spelled like everybody on Facebook, the killer is on da lose. Sorry, I'm a spelling and grammar Nazi and lack of literacy has been rampant lately. And I'm getting bored with this movie because the mystery isn't enough to keep your attention with all this blood flowing, sucking up effects and finding out that most of the people he touches are really scumbags.
So who killed the people in the woods? Simple my dear Watson - the wife and mother of the man and daughter who were killed during the construction of the dam. Had that pegged immediately. For the little twist (and to spend the rest of their special effects money no doubt) the woman, who runs a small inn, has propped all these dead people up with hooks and wires in the dining room. Because the sheriff is pretty much a duh movie cop, he's soon caught and prepared to join the dead man's party. But the bloody boy, who conveniently got out of his handcuffs shows up and kills her. Why couldn't he just do that to begin with? Hey, what have I told you about trying to use logic with horror movies?
To put the boy to rest (um, wait - oh never mind) they take all the bodies out and bury them in the dirt, just below the surface. Ick. So instead of Shallow Ground this should have been Shallow Graves, right? Oops, sorry, logic surfacing again. And here we get more mucking about because the boy does NOT rest, he just wanders off with his nude little self into the woods - where our last twist and supposedly scary ending is that another body covered in blood except this one is nasty with white eyes jumps out and kills the boy. Um, why was that? Who was that? They say nothing and that's actually fine with me. I'm done and so is the movie.