måndag 11 mars 2019

Dark Sister

Ever since i was a young boy, i grew up learning about art. Both of my parents used to paint, and they have made several paintings, and i have 2 of them in my home. Both of the paintings were made by my father, who have painted for many years. My mother stopped painting for personal reasons, but she does go to art exhibitions. I used to draw also, but not for the same reason as my parents did. But there was one painting i did do, back in the year 2003 while working at a school for disabled students. I was working with one of the students in art class, and the teacher asked if i could paint as well. So i did, and i painted a pear, with a energy field, with an arm strangling a man. I remember the reaction from the art teacher, she was fascinated by my bizarre painting as she wanted me to tell her what went through my mind painting this. I did explain that i just had an image of my mind, about an angry pear, who wanted to get the anger out, so the strangling was a way to get the anger out. The art teacher said that she have never seen anything like this before, and she suggested that i should paint more. I never did really, except i kept the painting.  When we speak about art in horror movies, we do have some titles to choose between. And i would like to talk about one specific film, that made art look very bizarre and fascinating in director David Cronenber´s cult classic Videorome, released in 1983. This film may not include paintings in that sense, but have a very artistic style that reminds us of painted pictures through TV. Videorome tells the story of Max Renne ( played by legendary actor James Woods ) who is the president of CIVIC-TV, a Toronto UHF television station. The ratings are bad, so Max decide to do something about this. As he is introduced to a new TV show called Videorome, he may finally have found what he is looking for. This film is very bizarre in many ways, and this is why i enjoy this film for the artistic style inspired by bad TV shows. Director David Cronenberg does a really good job trying to tell a story of how far we might be willing to go, to reach our goal. I recently came across a trailer on Wild Eye Releasing, on a Australian horror film called Dark Sister, at this film does look very different from what i have seen recently. And when i see an independent film that tries to go a different path, of course i am interested. Is this a horror film for the audience who loves art, or should someone paint all over Dark Sister and make the film vanish forever ?

Artist Cassie ( Amanda Woodhams ) paint what she sees from visions, mostly brutal murders that seems to have happened for real. She is not sure why she have these visions, but they make her paintings something out of the ordinary. But when this is affecting her personal life in a negative way, she realize that there must be an answer to her visions and why she is chosen.

When an odd movie comes along now and then, i can´t help myself feel pleased to see that there are still film makers with passion for telling stories. With that said, i can´t say that Dark Sister is a masterpiece in any way, since this film does have problems. But i have to say, this film clearly must have been inspired by the legendary horror director Dario Argentino, and this is something i really appreciate with this film. There is an odd mixture here of odd murder scenes, strange characters and the music is really weird. For me who appreciate horror movies that go outside the comfort zone, i enjoy seeing films like Dark Sister, that tries to bring back the odd horror movies of the 60´s and 70´s. The budget is very limited, but that does not affect the movie production in a negatvie way. The most positive detail about this film is without a doubt the main character Cassie, played by actress Amanda Woodhams. I really like her performance as painter Cassie, a woman who paints murders that she have visions about. Amanda Woodhams go into her character in a very interesting way, and she is the strength of this film. I would like to see her in more films in the future. Actor Liam Graham is here, who you might remember from the 2016 film called House Of Love. I would not say this is one of his better performances, but his character works for this film. One of the more interesting characters ( a part from Cassie ) is the character Dr. Sosa, played by actress Nicola Bartlett. A very mysterious character, and that is exactly what a film like this needs. The plot does have an interesting story, but i would have liked to see even more of Cassie´s personal issues, instead of jumping around to different characters. Because this film should have focused more about Cassie, since it feels like this film is more about her than the murders themselves. One of the problems i have with this film, is that some of the male characters feel very weak in this film. Most men does not give any memorable performances in Dark Sister, so it is basically the women who makes sure this film feels interesting. Director Sam Barrett ( who directed the thriller Esoterica ) have made an interesting horror film, that does not look like anything i have seen lately. I did notice that this film was actually made in 2014, but did not get a wider release until early 2019, through Wild Eye Releasing ( the film also goes under the name of Sororal ). Dark Sister is not a film for everyone, but if you appreciate the work of legendary director Dario Argentino, then i think you might enjoy Dark Sister. Give the film a chance, and support independent film makers so we can continue to get more interesting films made.

Rating: DDD

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