Thursday, October 28, 2010

31 Days of Halloween - Day 28 - Movie

In Drag Me To Hell (2009) Lorna Raver plays what may be the most horrifying senior citizen since the housekeeper in House on Haunted Hill (1960). This was Sam Raimi's long return to horror, and his time making glossier studio financed films has served him well. Drag Me To Hell has all of the attitude and much of the disgusting factor that his Evil Dead movies had with the polish and technical flourishes that a larger budget affords.

Christine (Alison Lohman) is a loan officer at a bank worried about her future. In a decision meant to help her obtain a coveted assistant manager position she decides not to extend more time to an old woman behind on her house payments and on the brink of foreclosure. This woman then violently attacks Christine in her car and places a curse on her. For the next few couple of days, Christine will be harassed by an evil spirit and on the third day that spirit will drag her to hell. Now, while her world unravels around her, and her sanity verges on the breaking point, she desperately seeks a way out.

This was a fun movie. The horror aspects, like those in the first two Evil Dead movies, are pretty over the top, leaning heavily on the gross out gag (poor Christine is subjected to plenty of vile substances) and some jump scares and less on a build up of tension. There is tension in the movie though. It doesn't come from wondering if Christine is going to find a way to save herself, but simply watching as she falls apart and wondering if she'll manage to salvage any of her normal life, such as her job and relationship once this is over. The movie has a strong cast, and Alison Lohman exudes vulnerability which makes us empathize with her character.

This was my first time seeing this movie and I'm looking forward to watching it again.


1 comment:

Michael Jones said...

Several people poohpoohed this movie as Raimi's worst, but I count it amongst his finest. (That crap baseball movie is his worst.) The Japanese title for this is: スペル or SPELL, which is rather odd but also fitting. My buddy and I giggled throughout the movie, the rest of the crowd were completely silent except for a few gasps of horror.
A fun flick indeed.