23 February 2011

Movies: Nine Dead


Here's a cheery little thriller I never heard of, starring Melissa Joan Hart (Sabrina/Clarissa) and Daniel Baldwin. 

Nine strangers are kidnapped and locked together in a single room. The masked bad man tells them they have to figure out why ALL of them are there. Meanwhile, for every 10 minutes that elapse and they can't tell him, he kills one of them. But they still have to figure out why the dead ones were there too.

So at first I'm thinking "cheesy Saw-alike film". But there was nowhere near enough screaming or blood or puppets on tricycles or torture of any kind for this movie to be a cheap Saw knock off. Oh - and not enough plot either. The complexity of the main set was one dark room with nine pipes and nine folks handcuffed to them. And a handful of colored chalk. Oh, and a heavy door with one of those spinny-wheel locks. This production spared no expense, er, wait, I meant Had no budget.
Regardless I was compelled to watch it through to the end.  Just to find out the ultimate why and how are these folks all connected enough to be kidnapped and about to die.  But there really isn't an end to the film, it just abruptly ends.

Dialog: varies from okay to bad to worse, and usually in the same character.  Characters: oh, you know, you've met them all before; they're stereotypes of a stereotypical cross-section of LA residents. Plot: yeah, kind of.  Continuity: sometimes the 10 minutes takes less than 10 minutes, which is acceptable. But when the 10 minutes between people get killed takes more than 10 minutes. Sheesh.
Acting: Oh My! the acting was all over the place.  Sometimes even in the same character.  Some of the supporting cast was decent.  Best of the bunch: The masked kidnapper murderer guy.

But the winner of the bestest overacting award goes to: 
It is a tie! Between Melissa Joan Hart and the 'chubby creepy lisping gay child molesterer dude in powder blue'!  Yeah - everything MJH learned about acting she learned on Clarissa Explains it All, and it shows. Poor girl, this one won't look good on her "dramatic lead" resume. Daniel Baldwin almost secured it, but his whole 10 seconds on screen were too brief to really make a strong showing.  And no, Danny Baldwin was not the 'chubby creepy lisping gay child molesterer dude' in this movie. I mean his character wasn't. 
And, if you watch, don't be alarmed at the ending. It was supposed to end like that.  
This is just one big guilty pleasure cheesy B-grade thriller mystery movie.
I dont even know if it just went direct to DVD or did it go direct to streaming?

(original post 20 Feb 2011)

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