Dir. Pearry Reginald Teo (2009)
A Ouija board tattooed on a person becomes a catalyst in the lives of four people.
CAUTION: THIS MOVIE'S SUBJECT & CONTENT IS EXTREMELY DISTURBING AND/OR BRUTAL. I HAVE CHOSEN NOT TO INCLUDE ANY PICTURES IN THIS REVIEW BECAUSE THEY MAY BE UPSETTING TO SOME READERS. MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS.
I saw Necromentia on a list that someone had written of newer disturbing movies, and I was interested from the preview that I watched. I added it immediately to my Netflix queue and was sad that, upon watching it, I was once again reminded that almost any movie can have a very interesting 30-second cut made from it. Honestly, that's pretty much all this movie was. Close to 2 minutes of entertainment, an hour and 15 minutes of nonsensical filler. I was really not impressed by this movie, but I felt I should give it a full review anyway. So here goes.
Necromentia is an intertwining tale of three different people who are being connected to the afterlife for different reasons, with an overseeing omniscient presence named Mr. Skinny navigating between all of their stories. Hagen is a man who is attempting to revive his dead "wife", and who spends his days alternating between working at a barbershop and tending to her dead corpse. And by tending, I mean sometimes having sex with. Travis is a sexual sadist by trade and a drug-addicted caretaker of his younger physically and mentally handicapped brother in his down time. His brother has disappeared after murdering his babysitter, so Travis is trying to find his way through the underworld to bring his brother back. Morbius is out for revenge, attempting to bring himself back to our world to wreak havoc on those who have wronged him. Mr. Skinny... well, Mr. Skinny is a freaky looking dude that really seems to have no other purpose in the movie than to be freaky.
Travis has learned that by tattooing a Ouija board into someone's back, he can open the gates of hell, so with the guidance from his biker-looking pal, he enlists Hagen in this service. They drug him under the pretenses of being able to reclaim his love from the underworld, and tattoo a large Ouija board on his back. They are then able to move to Hell and meet a disturbing looking dude in a gas mask and another that looks like something from Resident Evil.
At this point in the review, its really hard to develop too much more page space to plot, because, to be honest, there wasn't a whole lot more to discuss. There were a lot of jump cuts back and forth in time, and it was very amateurishly acted and directed. The writing wasn't great, and it seemed like a fairly good idea that was pretty poorly executed. Look, I've got nothing against amateur and independent filmmakers. I think its great for the industry and the genre. It's truly where we're going to be getting the Peter Jacksons, the Wes Cravens, the John Carpenters of the future. I just don't think that Pearry Reginald Teo, the director of this steaming pile of Clive Barker ripoff, has any of those accolades or comparisons in his future.
One of the quotes on the movie poster for this was something to the effect of "a mixture of Hellraiser and Saw, but better than both!" or some such nonsense. Sorry, that's not correct. That must've been a paid review. This movie was crap. It meandered through its story like a lost little kid, leaving some decent monster effects in its wake of shit. The sad thing is, it comes SO close in some respects. It's got a decent plot, but poorly executed. It's got some great and fairly scary creature effects, but wasted them on limited screen time and nonsensical explanations. The premise is interesting, but doesn't hold your interest. It all adds up to a movie that snatches defeat from the jaws of victory, paying much less attention to the parts that work than those that don't.
That being said, one scene that definitely needs to be seen is the Mr. Skinny Show. THAT part of the movie was, I thought, very well done, and genuinely creepy. The movie is 1 hour, 22 minutes long, and there is a YouTube clip of Mr. Skinny that is 1 minute, 9 seconds long. It shows the only creepy part in the entire movie. That's something like 1% of the movie. Them ain't good odds. This particular scene doesn't really seem like it belongs in the movie, nor does the extended scene with the gasmask guy near the end. Maybe you enjoy watching a movie for over an hour and getting around two minutes of enjoyment, but I don't. I'd rather... I dunno, watch baseball or something.
Who this movie is for: Extremely patient horror fans, Fans of weird, underground fetish shops, Pretty much no one else
Bottom Line: Check out the YouTube clip, skip the rest. If the director is reading this, do yourself a favor: change your name, and use this clip in another movie where its least expected. It's decently effective, it doesn't belong in this waste of time. There are a couple of truly outstanding moments in this film, but they're wasted on a film with not a whole lot more going for it.