Friday, December 17, 2010

Movie Review: Fear Chamber

I feel like I'm being unfair to The Asylum Studios. It's true that they can make original movies too. Terrible, terrible movies.

Maybe I should explain something. It is really easy for me to get horror movies at my local video store, usually in a box set of four for five bucks. In this case, I got a box set of movies created by Asylum Studios. And these movies I've never heard of before are of course full of amazing quality and very riveting.


The first movie I watched is called Fear Chamber. The plot is this: After confronting a serial killer, Detective Nick Ferguson gets stabbed in the heart and requires a new one. Shortly afterwards, he starts encountering visions of the killer's victims just before they die.

I don't think Fear Chamber really knows what it wants to be. A great deal of this movie is a buddy cop film (without the buddy) and barely requires a paranormal subplot at all. Without giving too much away, said subplot is so obvious anyone who has seen a horror movie will figure it out in the first scene. Unfortunately a great deal of this film is also repetitive-Nick thinks he sees ghosts and stupidly tells everyone, including his boss and his shrink that he knows the visions are real. Not surprisingly, everyone believes Nick is crazy, but not quite crazy enough to be booted off the case. Afterwards, Nick throws a hissy fit, someone calms him down, and Nick goes home and sees some more ghost jump-cuts. Then....repeat about a thousand times.

The acting in this is well...pretty bad. Nick is really the only decent actor in the film, and by 'decent', I mean he's not particularly bad, but he doesn't give a really great performance either. The angry police chief is about as cliched as you can get, always talking about how the mayor is on his case and how evil the media is. The female lead also gives a bland, emotionless performance. Oh yeah, and the bad guy is.....

....a really, really bad Heath Ledger impersonator.

Watching this film, I do see glimmers of original ideas that the film could have expanded on (such as the killer's motivation for murdering people) but it's buried underneathe a plot that's been done a thousand times. It doesn't help that there are also tons of plotholes. One hilarious one is that Nick gets some very vague evidence that the killer's first name might be Ted, which of course prompts him to kick down the door of every house belonging to a guy named Ted with a gun and without a search warrant (and by some lucky coincidence, the first one happens to be the killer!) but most of these plot holes I can forgive. Why?

Because I've taken a peek at the other movies. And this is the best out of the bunch.

Final Grade: 1 ½ out of five. Below average.

And yet there isn't a Fear Chamber anywhere in this movie.....


Chris H said...

Speaking of buddy cop movies and angry police chief cliches, have you ever seen the 1988 action/comedy/horror film Dead Heat? It's what you'd get if you mixed 48 Hrs and Re-Animator.

Natasha Bennett said...

Hi Chris,

No-but it's definitely on my list!