Director - Johannes Roberts
Year - (2004)


First off, I should say that I went into this movie wanting to like it. The premise sounded like it landed in the same area of my own script that Ive been putting together for some time. I wanted it to be good, but if nothing else, I was hoping to get some ideas on what to avoid in my own story. Unfortunately, I got plenty of ideas on how not to do a movie. Not to say that this movie was bad. For a direct to video independent flick, it showed some amazing promise for director Johannes Roberts. The story goes like this: What would happen if you died, but didnt know it yet? Thats what happens to Charlie Jackson, played by Dominique Pinon. By some unforeseen cosmic error, he didnt get to go to the afterlife, but instead was doomed to walk the earth as an unclaimed soul, unseen by the rest of the world. Worse yet, demons, honest to goodness demons just so happen to traffic these unclaimed souls in a sort of otherworldly black market.

To me, that sounded like a truly great premise, where the certainty of death isnt really certain. More than that, the character of Carol, played by Susan Paterno, is the only the unclaimed souls only hope at heaven, since its her job to find these lost fellows and blow them away with her trusty shotgun just to ensure they leave this earth and make it to heaven. Unfortunately, this is where the movie lost me. When Charlie wakes up, takes a shower and drives to work, I wouldve thought that someone wouldve noticed an invisible man, especially when a gang of students trying to get to class tramples him. More than that, Carol, who couldve been an awesome character as the right hand of God, instead spends most of her time running from the demons, making lame sarcastic remarks and complains about not liking her place as an undead executioner. Granted, theres some emotional baggage attached to the role shes filling, but I never got the sense of the weight that kind of job entailed. Apparently, when she was eight, she had rescued a stray cat only to be popped by a car a few seconds later. That little near death experience granted her the ability to see the lost souls and see exactly when and where someone is going to die.

I imagine if the script were edited over, and the plot holes were filled in nicely, it wouldve made more sense why Charlie could hold a gun, or why Carol is the only human that can see him. The one thing I did like is that cats are the agents of Satan. Its not their fault they can see Charlie, but the bounty hunter demon, played by Jeff Fahey, uses the little feline bastards to track him down. I just dont like cats. The one really good thing about the movie was the dialogue. People dont talk in long monologues in real life, but here, whether it was Carol confessing her sins to a priest, or the demon explaining that the lost souls are like clerical errors, no more common than when you get a gherkin on your burger and you ordered without, the dialogue works. You kind of have to curve the scale down a bit when watched a direct to video horror movie, but overall, it was a decent movie, though some of the slow motion shots got on my nerves more than once, its worth checking out for the premise alone.

Reviewed By - Evil Ash



Rating ( 2 of 5 )

 
 

 

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