7 February 2009 | lost-in-limbo
Madness... is served.
Reasonably obscure, low-budget comprised b-grade slasher item with a misogynistic edge (though light exploitation) and with a scathing blast on the processes of a mental hospital. As it stands there's nothing really out of the ordinary, but for such a trimmed production it's commendably done, as I went in expecting something truly inept. Still some might find it so and it's not completely flawless. While the death sequences can look laughably kitsch, few do show bits of innovation (though the killer seems to pick off whoever is about with no real pattern to it) and some scenes looked like they were made for novelty 3D, and coming to this site I found out it was the case.
Howard Jones is a psychotic in Cresthaven asylum, who ten years ago massacred some sorority sisters at the Omega Sorority house. By accident he's released into society, and heads back to Barrington where the original massacre occurred. Dr. Joan Gilmore discovers the mishap and tries to get something done about it, but the staffs seem to want to cover it up. So Gilmore goes to Barrington to convince them that Jones has returned, before he begins his bloody rampage again.
Quite predictable and dry, until it crops up with a shock ending (that's obviously hinted early on) and an unusual revelation that kind of brings it down to tell the truth. The pacing is too limp, as little bit of urgency would have not gone astray. Director Simon Nuchtern's genetic handling has its moments, by managing to build upon the characters and ominously growing situation. Sure sometimes it was clunky, but he tries with the tired material at hand. However being diluted of suspense and atmosphere, it wallowed on murkiness and a clumsy sounding score that incoherently pounded out the notes/cues.
The characters aren't particularly sympathetic, but Belinda Montgomery as Dr. Gilmore is believably resistant in her solid portrayal. Roderick Cook enthusiastically works as one of mischievous doctors and Sydney Lassick is rather facetious as the lazy sheriff. Viveca Lindfors shines in her small part and Jeffrey Bringham was sturdy as the psychotic killer. Low-budget horror/b-movie fans will have a treat with the support cast with likes of Solly Marx (who's mainly a stunt-man), Katherine Kamhi, Paul DeAngelo, Dennis Helfend, Paige Lyn Price and the sorely forgotten b-actress the lovely Elizabeth Kaitan.
An undemanding slasher effort, though make sure get the uncut version.