Saturday, October 31, 2009

Drag Me to Hell

Honestly, I'm not a big fan of horror films. Nonetheless, it was impossible for me to ignore this film which benefited from a big buzz during its release. As a film about bad spirits, Drag Me to Hell is more likely to make you roll your eyes rather than amaze you. Of course, the movie will sure find its audience, but I'm not part of it.

Christine Brown (Alison Lohman), an ambitious loan officer, wants to be an assistant manager at the bank where she works. In order for this to be reality, she has to prove to her boss what she can do. When an elderly lady (Lorna Raver) asks Christine a third extension on her mortgage, Christine says no despite having second thoughts. However, since the elderly lady can't take no for an answer, she passes on a terrible curse to Christine. If Christine doesn't get rid of her curse within three days, a spirit will come to her and drag her in the depths of hell.

Director Sam Raimi (Spider-Man) came back to what brought him in the movie industry: the genre of horror. I haven't seen Evil Dead, which is regarded as a cult film by many, but it looks like Raimi wanted to have fun while making Drag Me to Hell. Obviously, if your stomach is a bit weak, you may be impressed by Raimi's mastery of the special effects and his ability to keep you in the film's story so that you can see the amazing plot twist.

However, any praise for the film stops there. Between the beginning and the plot twist at the end, Drag Me to Hell looks like a complete parody of horror films. Despite being relatively entertaining and rightly acted, Drag Me to Hell, in its execution, looks a little bit dumb and amateurish. This is because the accumulations of incredible situations seem unnatural, so to speak. For instance, in the parking scene, many would be surprised to see that Christine still hasn't gone out of the parking while she thinks that the old lady is dead... All in all, the problem of this film is not entirely due to the way it's written; it's mostly its execution.

Finally, despite the obvious efforts the cast put in (especially the lovely Alison Lohman), Drag Me to Hell is definitely not going to enter History as one of the greatest horror films. Indeed, with the right dose of entertainment, Drag Me to Hell is a film that you watch if you're willing to turn your brain off for a while. However, the film is just worth watching for the spectacular ending.

Rating: 3/5

Origin:USA (2009)
Length:99 minutes
Screenplay:Sam Raimi and Ivan Raimi
Director:Sam Raimi
Starring:Alison Lohman, Justin Long and Lorna Raver

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