Wednesday, June 3, 2009

The Skeptic

Title: The Skeptic
Release Date: 2009
Score: 1 out of 4

After an obnoxiously long and boring white text on black screen opening credits bonanza featuring an uninspired theme for a looong fucking time we are treated to some in media res - a cop trying to locate a woman in her dark, seemingly empty house... you get the idea...

We are soon introduced to our jackass "atheist" skeptic. His friend "Sully" is a superstitious paranoid played by Tom Arnold. Tom Arnold is difficult to deal with, as his presence in the film is noxious and nauseating, yet he becomes the essential forwarder of plot throughout the first part of the movie. I assume he is the ghost, with his presence driving the skeptic further towards insanity. Or at least that is what would happen to me if my friend was fucking TOM ARNOLD!! Christ why would you cast him in a horror movie? In any movie?

Unfortunately Mr. Skeptic is pretty boring throughout his haunted house existentialist breakdown, although the scenery is pretty and very chilling. Still, Tim Daly displays little depth in his acting, giving only occasional glimmers of technical excellence.

Daly also has little to work with, the dialog is banal and cheap. His possession and the progression of the ghost house trappings come along so slow that he generally just comes across as a violent creep, rather than a creature worth pitying.

The film is actually quite boring for most of the time. It doesn't really shape up high in any area, except for "crazy" points and "psychic" points or whatever. Actually from my own knowledge of general ghost theory, this movie is rather inaccurate as to how a parapsychologist and even a genuine skeptic would act in such situations they are found in.

Like the sleep lab psi op being run by the creepy parapsychologist, the whole movie is a machination of torture; it punishes the viewer at every turn with terrible lines, bad sets, and a girl who randomly shouts and shit. The basic gist is the concept that repressed memories cause psychokinetic outbursts -- or is it something else?!? Something more supernatural or worse, more psychopathological? What should be days in movie time is hours in this. The plot is like a short story lengthened to its breaking point and the payoff is hardly worth it... pretty boring actually.

I would avoid it, its pretty much pure shit. Bad writing, bad acting, and its not scary. Booooo! Go watch Shock Corridor instead! At least it has some laughs in it.