Review: Soul Survivors

04 Aug

The DVD cover has that group shot that hint heavily that is one those films that appeared in the wake of Scream starring actors from popular TV series all posed in a tight group looking straight out at the camera.Their prominence in the photograph reflects their fame more than it does their prominence in the film since Melissa Sagemillar, who plays lead character, is squeezed in at the back. This doesn’t really fill me with confidence and while I expected it to be just typical college horror film copying Scream it turned out I was wrong. This more of a supernatural mystery film but it still isn’t very original or scary.

Two young couples are out drinking Cassie (Melissa Sagemiller) and Sean (Casey Affleck) with Matt (Wes Bentley) and Annabel (Eliza Dushku). Matt and Annabel suggest they go to a rave in a remote abandoned church where they dance and Cassie has to fight off the advances of strange masked man. She goes to find Sean and they go outside, not noticing Matt who hides himself behind the car and he listens in on their conversation like a creepy villain. Sean tells Cassie he loves her but there is an awkward moment when she does not say it back. Matt and Cassie used to be in relationship and Sean wonders if Cassie still has feelings for him. That’s when Matt makes his presence known, pretending to be drunk. Sean goes back into the rave to fetch Annabel so they can leave. Once Sean is gone Matt reveals he is not drunk and he wants Cassie to kiss him, just a goodbye kiss, honest, nothing else to it at all. By the time Cassie agrees Sean has returned with Annabel and he sees the kiss. This soapy melodrama is starting to get annoying

They drive off with an awkward mood in the car. Sean doesn’t want to talk but Cassie is protesting her innocence. They don’t notice another car full of people from the rave passing them. In fact a short while later they turn a corner and the other car is across the road in front of them and they smash headfirst into it. Afterwards it turns out Sean has been killed and the others survived but Cassie keeps getting the impression that she can see him and that he’s trying to communicate with her. She also keeps seeing creepy people from the rave chasing after her. As time passes the visions get scarier, she no longer trusts her friends and she turns to a priest Father Jude (Luke Wilson) at the local church for help.

This is not really a horror film at all but the film’s script does deliberately mislead you into thinking it’s going that way. The film is full of scary characters and suspicious behaviour seen through the eyes of a character with an increasingly unreliable point of view but it didn’t really work for me. Perhaps I‘ve seen this type of story too often before on film and TV but I saw what they were trying to do so for me it was more case of seeing how they were trying to do it and I was not surprised by the big reveal towards the end.

Rating 6/10

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Posted by on August 4, 2012 in Entertainment, Film


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2 responses to “Review: Soul Survivors

  1. Emma

    August 4, 2012 at 11:08 am

    I saw this when it came out, many many years ago. I loved Eliza Dushku from her role as Faith in Buffy and I’d seen Wes Bentley in American Beauty so I had to go see this one. I thought the premise was better than the delivery. Only okay for me.

    • Peter Anderson

      August 4, 2012 at 3:24 pm

      I missed it when it came out but I do like Eliza Dushku too. Wes Bentley I’d only seen in Ghost rider which is not a plus point on anyone’s CV. I think this was just an idea I’d seen in things like Supernatural being done better


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