Decent idea , very poorly executed.
, 23 Nov 2009
The idea of making a horror film based on a misguided musicians dabbling with the occult is an intriguing one. After all didnt the fact Jimmy Page had a thing for Aleister Crowley make him far more interesting ? So Reverb a British film about an errant rock star meddling with things best left alone seems a promising addition to some of the excellent home grown horror films of recent years- The Descent , Eden Lake - to name two.
Alex ( Leo Gregory ) and Maddy (Eva Birtwhistle ) are call centre workers determined to get their dreams of a music career kick started. Their friend Dan ( Luke de Woolfson ) works in a high-tech music studio and sneaks them in one night so they can record some tracks. Maddy comes across a mysterious song on the mixing desk that has disturbing sounds and voices in the background. Maddy investigates the songs history with the help of Wurzel ( Stephen Lord ) a record dealer and learns of its occult genesis and that it has something to do with a dead rock star who had got up to some shady shenanigans in that same studio .
Things go pear shaped pretty quickly and what transpires is like an extended Nine Inch Nails video except nowhere near as much fun. Director Eitan Arrusi botches a promising premise with his clodhopping direction. His use of jerky cuts , very much a modern style, and discordant jarring noises is pure horror done MTV. His habit of cutting away to shots of knifes and blood comes across as more of an extreme health & safety infomercial than anything Knifes= sharp = cuts = blood =bad. This hyperactive methodology robs the film of any tension but paradoxically also robs it any true scares.
Even worse , and this is a staple of most poor horror movies, the screenplay is incoherent and the characters( badly written in the first place) decisions are never rooted in anything logical .To be fair to the main actors they do the best they can with the material they have been given . Eva Birtwhistle especially deserves better than this tripe.
The only other positive thing i can think to say about Reverb is that its uses sound effectively. The scenes where Maddy is investigating the mystery track do harvest a certain frisson but this is quickly dissipated by Knife/cut/ discordant music/cut/pool of blood on floor/ cut blood streaked bloke staring into space / cut / back to knife and well you get the picture Im sure.
So as I said at the start of the review Reverb is a film with a decent basic idea. The idea of a supernatural / horrific message conveyed by another mode has also been covered in the film White Noise which also botched the hypothesis though it is still superior to Reverb.. Maybe we should pray the Japanese/Koreans make a film based on this concept .They know how to do creepy horror films with panache.
- Was this review helpful to you?
(1) Yes |