When a turn of the century prison reformatory is slated for demolition, a grisly discovery is made. Hidden deep underground beneath the west cell block is a sub-basement structure that has n... Read allWhen a turn of the century prison reformatory is slated for demolition, a grisly discovery is made. Hidden deep underground beneath the west cell block is a sub-basement structure that has not been entered in 100 years. Inside are the skeletal remains of several brutally slain ch... Read allWhen a turn of the century prison reformatory is slated for demolition, a grisly discovery is made. Hidden deep underground beneath the west cell block is a sub-basement structure that has not been entered in 100 years. Inside are the skeletal remains of several brutally slain children. As a CSI team arrives at the prison, an even more disturbing discovery is made tha... Read all
Scenes like the reflection in the doorknob and the upside down creature in the airvent were brilliance in their simplicity. I put 13 Seconds near the very top of my list of favorite Horror movies.
So I was really looking forward to his follow-up film, especially since it seemed he had more money to put into it, and had a slew of Horror Cult legends in the cast.
And while Fallen Angels wasn't a bad movie by any means, I was pretty disappointed. It looked like there was more focus toward making scenes just for the sake of putting familiar actors in the movie then there was in telling a good story. Many of the characters aren't even around long enough to make any kind of real impact or let the viewer make an emotional investment in them.
The great Reggie Bannister was here, then gone. Michael Berryman had a quick scene. Christy Hemme, who looked great, was in the film for all of 7 seconds, with no dialog. It seems like the addition of so many 'names' took away from the overall quality of the film.
Also, much of the film was too dark. It was difficult to see what was going on in some scene. I know the film was taking place in the sub-basement of an abandoned prison, and it's supposed to be dark, but the lighting could've been better.
I did enjoy the movie though, although it's probably not one I'd watch again and again like 13 Seconds. The scene with the Medium was very well done, probably my favorite in the movie. The ending 'revelation' was pretty cool, although it's execution came off a little bit hokey, and some of the kill scenes with the teeth pulling were pretty intense.
I will say it was a much better horror film then the garbage the big budget movie studio's have been pushing out for the last several years. Mainstream horror has really lost it's way over the years, unless another mindless, by the numbers, Saw sequel is your thing. I'll take a good indy flick from the likes of Jeff Thomas or Dante Tomaselli over that nonsense any day of the week.
Jeff Thomas is a very talented film maker. All you have to do is watch Fallen Angels and especially 13 Seconds to see that. And I have a ton of confidence that by the time he's finished, he's gonna have a long line of great horror films under his belt.
But for his future work, he needs to focus on making a great movie and telling a good story more then making a film that tries to jam as many Kane Hodders and Reggie Bannisters into a 90 minute film as he can.
Oh...and Peter Brady? C'mon Jeff.
That being said, I'll be eagerly awaiting Jeff Thomas's next film, whenever and whatever that may be.
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- Nov 19, 2007