Thursday, May 13, 2010

100 FEET

Eric Red, the screenwriter of such cult classics as THE HITCHER (the original), NEAR DARK and BLUE STEEL, and the director of the underrated (in my opinion) BODY PARTS and BAD MOON, returns to the horror genre with 100 FEET (2008), a solid supernatural thriller.

Marnie Watson (Famke Janssen, X-MEN, HOUSE ON HAUNTED HILL) is convicted of manslaughter in the death of her cop husband (Michael Pare, STREETS OF FIRE), despite her insistence that he was a wife beater and that she killed him in self-defense. She is granted early release from prison but placed under house arrest in her New York townhouse, forced to wear an electronic anklet that will summon the police if she ventures more than 100 feet from the transmitter in her home. Unfortunately, the violent spirit of her dead husband haunts the house, and isn't through with her yet...

Although the script demands considerable suspension of disbelief on the part of the viewer, 100 FEET is a fine haunted house story. Janssen delivers a convincing, committed performance as the tortured prisoner-in-her-own-home, demonstrating remarkable strength as the story progresses and the character refuses to be a helpless victim. The rest of the small cast, which includes Bobby Cannavale (SNAKES ON A PLANE), Patricia Charbonneau (BRAIN DEAD) and Ed Westwick (GOSSIP GIRL) also acquit themselves admirably. The special effects are maybe a little hokey, but not distractingly so, and at least one effects sequence - which I'd rather not spoil - is really very effective.

Now, I admit that there are some logic problems with the story, and that I may be prejudiced by my great lust for the Dutch goddess known as Famke Janssen - but I sincerely found the movie atmospheric, occasionally suspenseful, and ultimately, to be good, spooky fun.

100 FEET comes to DVD courtesy of The Asylum (though they didn't produce it), with a very basic release. The disc sports a solid, 2.35:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer, and a choice between 5.1 Surround or 2.0 audio. The only extra is the trailer.

As I said, nitpickers could probably tear the plot apart, but if you go into it looking for a fun ghost story, you might have a good time with it. I did.

BUY: 100 Feet