Director: Darren Lynn Bousman
Writer: Christopher Monfette
Based on: Bousman’s comic
Cast: Jessica Lowndes, Joe Anderson, Dayton Callie, Lin Shaye, John McConnell, Bryan Batt, Michael Paré
Part of: /slash Filmfestival
Seen on: 2.10.2016
[Review by cornholio.]
Julia (Jessica Lowndes) is a reporter who dreams of getting to write a big story. When her sister and her family is killed, her reporterly instincts kick in and she starts to investigate why a stranger with no connection to her family and apparently deeply regretful about his actions would take her entire family from her. With the help of her ex-boyfriend Declan (Joe Anderson), a police officer, Julia takes up a trail of mysteries that is connected to Jebediah Crone (Daytone Callie).
Abattoir works from an interesting idea and with strong visuals, but unfortunately the clichéd characters do take away some of the enjoyment. Still, it’s an interesting addition to horror movie lore.
Abattoir starts off strong, then lags in the middle and finally gives us an interesting ending visually, but unfortunately not all that interesting storywise. Much of the lagging certainly has to do with the fact that I simply didn’t particularly like Declan or Julia and the middle part is all about them and their tragic love that isn’t supposed to be. Maybe if they hadn’t been such walking clichés or maybe if they had managed to make the clichés more emotional, I woudl have felt more for them than annoyance. But especially their love story got on my nerves and nothing more.
That lack of emotional investment on my side also meant that the ending didn’t really carry the punch it could and should have, which also meant that the showdown, despite looking great, felt incredibly long. I was ready for things to be over about five times before they actually were over.
But I loved the idea that Crone is building his own haunted house by collecting hautned rooms from all over. I never thought of hauntings transplanted and utilized in this way. And Bousman creates fascinating images with it – especially the ghosts looked great and really creepy, and I liked the rooms in the woods.
I would like to read the comic this is based on, especially because the film’s strong suit were the images it conjures up. But the film didn’t make me want to go out and read them straight away, so who knows if I ever get to it.
Summarizing: I’ve definitely seen worse films. But also better.