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Old 02-28-2015, 11:42 AM   #1
Anaestheus
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Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 1,332
The Scribbler (2014)

Another late night recommendation from Netflix.

A woman with multiple personalities is moved into a weird apartment complex that serves as a halfway house for mentally unstable people after she undergoes some experimental treatment. Once she arrives, however, residents of the building start committing suicide by jumping from the windows. Or is there some other explanation?

This one cribs a lot from Identity, Donnie Darko, Sucker Punch, a few touches of Tetsuo, and a dash of The Matrix. Even though it tries to keep up the puzzle by telling the story in a non-linear fashion, it's really rather predictable. It is also severely hampered by a pretty overwhelming air of teenage angst and pretension. This is definitely one made for the literate goth crowd with a handful of heavily dropped quotes from Henry Miller and Charles Bukowski. And, I can easily imagine a lot of viewers getting annoyed with all the pseudo-philosophy that someone on board apparently thought was seriously profound stuff.

That said, I have to admit that this one does have a certain charm that kept me engaged. There's a nice level of nuttiness to the whole thing. It never goes as far as it should. And, I can't tell if that was due to a limit of creativity or funds. But it obviously wants to be a cult hit and it almost makes it. Almost. But the parts that are good were really quite good. While I doubt that the plot twists will catch anyone off guard, I think the way they happen will probably be pleasant surprises.

There's a fair amount of good imagery, which is what attracted me to this in the first place. And, even when it lacks creativity, it's hard to not appreciate the effort that they put into the lighting, sets, and framing.

Katie Cassidy (Supernatural, Arrow) ends up giving a pretty engaging performance by the end Though her pouty/jaded face is pretty annoying in the beginning, she loosens up as the film goes on and becomes quite charming. And, she's certainly on board for all the silliness and I think that is the main thing that kept me watching. Garret Dillahunt (Deadwood and the remake of Last House on the Left) also delivers a solid performance as the main supporting character. Though the rest of the cast is passable at best.

I certainly wouldn't recommend it to just anyone, but I know I have a couple of friends who would really get a kick out this.

Last edited by Anaestheus; 02-28-2015 at 11:49 AM.
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