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My Soul To Take (2010)

DVD Cover (Rogue Pictures)
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6.1
 / 10
2 votes
Genres / Traits:
Horror, Slasher Film, 3-D
Director:
Wes Craven Wes Craven
Starring:
Max Thieriot Max Thieriot
John Magaro John Magaro
Denzel Whitaker Denzel Whitaker
Zena Grey Zena Grey
Nick Lashaway Nick Lashaway
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Review by bluemeanie
Added: October 11, 2010
This was an unusual experience for me. I have been expecting the absolute worst for months and months now, certain that Wes Craven's latest production would be nothing short of disastrous. I walked out of the theatre with the idea that I really liked the film. I think I was so hoping it to be better than I had feared that I tricked myself into believing it. Now, two days later, let me tell you -- the movie sucked. No excuses. No justifications. The movie just plain sucked. It proves to me, once and for all, that Wes Craven has lost his touch. This, along with "Cursed", might make him one of the worst 'horror' directors working today. Forget his previous work. Forget the major steps he took in the horror genre. Forget all that. "My Soul to Take" is a train wreck.

This slasher film takes place in the town of Riverton and the Riverton Ripper was killed sixteen-years previous. On the same night, seven kids were born in the town and every year they celebrate their birthdays by warding off the spirit of the Ripper and celebrating his legend. This year, however, it seems the Ripper really is back and might have possessed one of the Riverton Seven. Is it Bug (Max Thierot), our protagonist, the odd kid who likes vultures and might be the Ripper's son? Is it Alex (John Magaro), the abused kid with the quirky sense of humor? Is it Jerome (Denzel Whitaker), the blind black kid with no story arc? Basically, kids start dying and someone has to be responsible and the rest of the kids have to figure out who that might be. This film is part "Scream", part "Cursed", part "Shocker" and all schlock. It's a slasher film of the lowest order -- from Wes Craven.

Before I dive head-first into the negatives, let's talk about the positives. The opening sequence was just odd and unexpected enough to work. It was darkly humorous, a little sinister and unrelenting. It reminded me of that great opening sequence from "Shocker" and you could tell Craven had fun directing it. Then he ran out of steam. Kudos to the forest kill sequence because there were a couple of original moments there. And a shout-out to Max Thierot who was actually very enjoyable in the role of Bug. He was immensely likable, cute as a button and really did a nice job for most of the film. The rest of the actors could have taken notes from him. Craven use to have such a knack for directing all of his younger actors. Gone. Maybe it never existed at all.

We will start with the script. Woof. I remember when letting Wes Craven loose on a script was a good thing. Right? There's a reason Kevin Williamson's scripts always worked for Craven -- they were quirky and original and fast-paced. Craven stops for ridiculous dialog sequences that make no sense, most of them revolving around some damned California condor that makes no sense at all. The final twenty minutes of the film is more painful than I can accurately describe. It's like watching a scene featuring actors who have no idea what's going on, directed by a man who doesn't know how it's going to end, shot by a man who probably thinks he's shooting another scene or maybe even another film entirely. The ending just grinds the film to a halt, that coupled with the ridiculous voice of the killer and the anti-climax.

So, long Wes Craven -- former horror master. So long to the man who basically shaped my childhood. So long to the man who brought us so many fantastic scares. That man has passed. Maybe his age is catching up with him after long last. Wes Craven just isn't hip anymore. He hasn't been since "Scream". I cannot and will not recommend "My Soul to Take" to anymore and think it might even be worse than "Cursed" after further reflection. It's likely his worst film to date. I cannot believe I am giving up on one of my favorite directors but I see no other choice. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. Fool me multiple, multiple times and you probably don't need to be directing horror films anymore. 2/10.
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385 #1: 385 - added 10/11/2010, 10:12 PM
Cursed can't be looked at as a straight forward horror movie, since it really wasn't supposed to be. They were trying to recreate the tongue in cheek tone that made Scream so successful, and dropped the ball. Not defending it, since a shit film is a shit film, but still.
bluemeanie #2: bluemeanie - added 10/13/2010, 11:23 AM
Well...that is what is was supposed to be the SECOND time they shot it. I'd love to see all that unused footage from the first shoot.
benloveshorror #3: benloveshorror - added 10/14/2010, 02:20 PM
Dread Central gave this movie 4 out of 5 stars. I thought that wasn't right, after seeing the uninteresting trailer and the fact this wasn't screened for critics. I haven't seen the movie, but your review is probably more accurate.
385 #4: 385 - added 06/13/2012, 06:56 PM
I dug it. Wasn't stellar, but I've certainly seen worse; including from Craven.
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