I haven’t had much success lately with Anchor Bay Canada’s recent releases of horror DVDs. You had duds like House of the Witchdoctor, Wrecker and A Place in Hell. All of them tried really hard to be something different (well, not Wrecker) and good, but failed. Thankfully, the chain has been broken with their recent release of Suspension – a love letter to slasher fans. The biggest attraction with Suspension is its story, so I will have to tread carefully, as I don’t want to spoil it, but if you’re interested in hearing what’s good and bad about the flick, read on…
ON THE 8TH ANNIVERSARY OF A SIBLING’S MURDER AT THE HANDS OF HER FATHER, 17-year-old Emily is having a hard time dealing with cruel classmates and being suspended. But her day is about to get even tougher when a dangerous maniac on the loose just may be Emily’s father. Now home alone looking after her mute little brother Jeremy, Emily must confront her demons once and for all when Daddy comes home.
Years ago, Emily’s father killed a total of eight people and on the 8th anniversary of his killing spree, Emily just happens to be home alone. She passes the time by drawing in her book gruesome murders, which we get to see play out in a rather ingenious use of black and white, with a mix of red thrown in. Are the murders real though or just her imagination running wild? Is her father finally coming after her? If I was to tell you anymore, it would ruin the fun.
I really do wish I could go more in-depth with the story, but alas, I can’t. I will, however, tell you that it’s a wild ride, with a lot of gruesome murders harking back to the good ol’ days of ‘80s slashers. Barry Nerling, who plays the masked killer in the movie does a fantastic job and comes across like a mix of Michael Myers and Jason Voorhees. This man actually deserves a shot of playing Myers, as every time I saw him on screen wearing that white mask and stalking towards the camera, I kept picturing Halloween.
Kudos also need to be given to actress Ellen MacNevin,who gives us a solid performance of the fragile and tormented Emily. She’s a girl on the edge thanks to traumatic past events but is trying her best to cope with them. Although, drawing and imagining your high school teacher being tortured and murdered is not what I call a good coping mechanism, but whatever works I suppose.
The only complaints I have for Suspension is early on in the movie, it reveals a couple story beats that should have stayed a secret. It only took those two lines of dialogue for me to figure out what was going to happen and I think if they kept those lines out of the movie, I would have been more surprised at everything that transpires. However, even with that mishap, the movie still kept me glued to the screen and smiling from ear to ear anytime Tom was on screen and the blood started flying.
If you end up picking up the Anchor Bay Canada DVD, you can look forward to a commentary track with director Jeffery Lando, writer Kevin Mosley and actor/producer Sage Brocklebank that is a joy to sit through. They do talk over each other a lot, but they sound like a bunch of good guys that had a blast making a low budget horror film.
Things to look forward to!
• A cop trying to dig a bullet out of an unfortunate victim – cue lots of blood and guts.
• Numerous kill scenes that give us a generous helping of plasma.
• A killer who means business.
• A woman in a dominatrix outfit!
• Ingenious use of a pencil.
• A stylistic style of shooting certain scenes
• A few surprises or two.
Suspension was something that surprised me in a good way. It ended up being a bloody good slasher that will have most horror fans grinning. Be sure to make Suspension your next victim!