Starring: David Caruso, Stephen Gevedon, Paul Guilfoyle
Directed by: Brad Anderson
Running Time: 1 hr 37 mins
This is another movie that slipped through the cracks of busy-ness that should've been posted in October. *sighs* Fortunately here at Muddy Cult, horror media is not just reserved for October. It's safe to say that this post has been collecting a bit of dust while I tended to slightly newer things in my queue.
An asbestos abatement crew wins the bid for an abandoned insane asylum. What should be a straightforward, if rather rushed, job, is complicated by the personal histories of the crew. In particular, Hank is dating Phil's old girlfriend, and Gordon's new baby seems to be unnerving him more than should be expected. Things get more complicated as would-be lawyer Mike plays the tapes from a former patient with multiple personalities, including the mysterious Simon who does not appear until Session 9, and as Hank disappears after finding some old coins. [Source: IMDb]
The downside of running a blog by yourself for a while is trying to keep up with everything. Matters are made worse when you're already majorly behind...which I still am, but I am getting a little better. In short, what I'm trying to say, is putting off certain posts for others leads you to forget things. I remember going into this movie not expecting too much. I haven't come across too many good movies that I've never heard, but sounded at least somewhat interesting. Once the movie started going, I increasingly became more and more interested in what was going on. The movie balanced the session tapes and the group's exploits throughout the abandoned building well. It didn't disrupt the flow of reveal and kept me wanting more as time went on. The characters were interesting and diverse in personality and produced a decent conflict among themselves and the mysterious assailant. While they cleaned up things and explored the area, I got to indulge in the slow building information of the former patient Mary through the tapes and her various mental inhabitants. The story does build up slowly and you're constantly wondering which direction it'll go, but once it picks up, it's quite a trip. Everyone gets to face their own set of demons: darkness, greed, and guilt.
I enjoyed the atmosphere of this movie and it successfully conveyed an emptiness and expanse. I believed that this area was big enough to lose people, although sometimes I had a tiny bit of difficulty keeping up with the layout in my head when everyone was separated. As much as I enjoyed listening to the tapes, I did have a bit of a hard time hearing certain parts and comprehending the contents completely. Some may brush this off as a minor problem, but these tapes play a major part in the overarching story. These tapes concede with our characters and reveals a bit of history of the asylum. It's also related to the climax and conclusion of their job. Thinking about it now, the contents aren't extremely remarkable or new, but the execution was at least interesting enough to keep watching and figuring out how the story would end.
Session 9 is honestly nothing super special and doesn't add anything new to the table, but what it does with its cliche contents is take a slightly different approach with its story, atmosphere, and characters. Watching these characters interact and develop kept me interested and curious on how their job would conclude. Despite the twist being either slightly predictable or cliched, I thought it was executed well and gave me a little surprise. In short, this wasn't a terrible movie and I was pleasantly surprised. It is intriguing and offers some good material to the mentally insane category.
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