Saturday, February 8, 2014

The Invoking (DVD Review) - Image

Directed By: Jeremy Berg
Written By:  Jeremy Berg, John Portanova
Starring: Trin Miller, Brandon Anthony, Andi Norris
Color/82 Minutes/Not Rated
Region 1

The Film
Sam has inherited a home and quite a bit of land in the rural town of Sader Ridge from her biological family that she doesn't remember. She travels to the property with 3 of her friends for a small getaway together before one goes on a 6 month European vacation. While there they encounter a strange young man that knows quite a bit about Sam and her family and claims to have been best friends with her. 

It doesn't take long for Sam's mind to start playing games with her as she has visions of her friends freaking the fuck out, acting violent and abusive towards each other and just being assholes. It seems that there is something dark in Sam's past and it is quickly moving in and taking a hold of her and that is bad news for her friends. 

THE INVOKING is a low budget psychological horror film from director Jeremy Berg. Excuse me for a second while I sum up my thoughts on this movie in five words... Fuck this piece of shit. Seriously. I have a deep respect for filmmakers even if I don't like their movie. While this movie wouldn't be an exception to this rule, it is an exceptionally annoying movie that took every bit of patience I had not to hit the eject button and say "fuck it". The story itself is simple enough and has been executed to some degree of success numerous times in the past but not here. Nope. We, the viewers, are subjected to incredible amounts of hammed up overacting (just wait for the scenes where the "tough/cool guy" friend acts out as Sam's abusive father... fucking hell). I honestly had to think about whether or not those moments were meant to be funny or disturbing. They were neither. The psychological horror moments were weak and boiled down to little more than a character acting out of sorts and then vanishing as soon as someone turned around. SPOOKY. 

The character of Eric, the creepy childhood friend, has the charisma of a log. I get it, he's supposed to be quiet and removed, but he fails to be that with any sort of believability. And besides the movie's obvious M. Night "WHAT A TWIST!" ending that we can see coming from a mile away is the character of Caitlin. Oh, Caitlin. FUCK. YOU. We'd all be better off had you taken your hipster, black framed Coke bottle glasses to Europe and been kidnapped and thrown in to a sex ring before this movie happened. Not even Liam Neeson would give a fuck. At least then we wouldn't have to hear your best friend in the movie whine about you leaving for six months the whole fucking time. Dear reader, I am dead serious in how deeply I loathe this character. Her personality is grating. GRATING. I have no idea what is going on inside her head that makes everything so simply quirky and neat and fantastic that she's so bubbly and excited about the most mundane bullshit. Everything doesn't need a little knee slapping quip. FUCK. 

It is possible that I may have missed something here. It's possible that this was a good movie and I'm just bitching about nothing. No it's not. The only thing this movie invoked was a headache and anger.

The Audio & Video
The DVD from Image looks fine. The 1.78:1 widescreen transfer is clean and has a natural look to it. The digital photography isn't stunning by any means but it definitely gets the job done and this disc does a fine job with it. The Dolby Digital 5.1 is much of the same- solid through and through.

The Extras
A couple of commentary tracks and a "Behind The Scenes" featurette manage to make this a pretty good disc as far as special features go. 

The Bottom Line
I've said all I have to say about this movie.

THE INVOKING is available HERE

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