Sublime (2007)

DVD Cover (Raw Feed)
Genres: Horror, Psychological Thriller, Supernatural Thriller
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Tony Krantz Tony Krantz
Tom Cavanagh Tom Cavanagh
Kathleen York Kathleen York
Lawrence-Hilton Jacobs Lawrence-Hilton Jacobs
Kat Coiro Kat Coiro
David Clayton Rogers David Clayton Rogers

6.0 / 10 - Overall Rating

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Review by Chad
Added: December 28, 2009
I've always wondered why a studio would go out of their way to misrepresent a movie that they are attempting to sell to us, the viewing audience. Look at it like this: if the powers that be had decided to market Twilight as an ultra-gritty horror flick, they would have lost out on that all-important tween audience and they would have also pissed off just about everyone that bought a ticket on opening day. That's shooting yourself in the foot, so obviously, they marketed it exactly as they should have. Other films, films kind of like Sublime, are not as lucky. This is a movie that has been repeatedly slammed by reviewers and casual viewers alike since its release, mainly due to the fact that it was marketed as a supernatural horror flick with elements of torture porn thrown in for good measure. Therefore, it's not shocking that the audience who came in expecting that kind of movie left with a sour taste in their mouths when they were presented with a surreal drama-horror hybrid that is very light on the "horror" and very heavy on the "surreal" and "drama."

With that out of the way, I'm faced with a bit of a dilemma as a reviewer. You see, I hate spoiling movies on this little site of ours, but if I just give you a general idea as to what the film is about, I will come across as a liar after you read that opening paragraph and the following synopsis. It's going to sound a lot like a horror movie, so just trust me when I say that it's only dipping its toes into that genre to set up the bigger picture. Fair enough?

So, the storyline centers around George (Tom Cavanagh), a man who is facing two dreadful days in his life: his fortieth birthday and a routine colonoscopy, two events that will take place in the same week. Hell of a birthday present right there. His wife Jenny (Kathleen York) is there by his side during the procedure and his subsequent recovery, but there's a small problem. It turns out that something went wrong in the operating room, and George is going to be facing some serious recovery time in this hospital. As if that wasn't bad enough, there's something not quite right about this place, and the employees working there... well, let's just say that I've never understood people who were scared of hospitals, but I could see their point of view if all hospitals were like the one found within these ninety minutes. Anyway, George sets out to get to the bottom of this mystery, so he decides to hop in his wheelchair and investigate further - starting with the "abandoned" wing, naturally. Rounding out the cast is the not-at-all nice orderly Mandingo (Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs) and the flirty nurse Zoe (Katherine Cunningham-Eves), two people who will have very important roles in the coming days of George's life.

See? That sounds like your typical supernatural horror movie, doesn't it? Well, it's not. As the "main" storyline unravels, we're presented with numerous flashbacks of the days leading up to this hospital visit, and we start to realize that not all is as it appears in George's current situation. We also learn what exactly happened in the operating room, and we even discover a secret or two about the staff in this place. All of this occurs while raising real-world questions of its audience, giving us some moral dilemmas to chew upon after the credits have rolled. Even though the film only dabbles in the horror genre, this does not mean that it won't send a shiver up your spine once you realize what is going on.

I think I may have said too much already, so let's skip ahead to one of my biggest complaints about the film, shall we? Alright, so we're about ten minutes away from the credits, we've discovered the truth behind the situation, and we've witnessed one hell of a chilling scene. Then, the unfortunate happens: the filmmakers decide that instead of ending the movie during a scene that absolutely screams "stop right now, this is the perfect note to end things on", they're going to go ahead and cap things off with a sappy ending. I wouldn't go so far as to call it the stereotypical "and they all lived happily ever after" ending, but I will say that this movie is hard evidence that sometimes less is so, so much more.

As far as the acting goes, I really have no complaints. Tom Cavanagh is an actor that I am wholly unfamiliar with, but his work here was exceptional. He was able to carry the film on his back with ease, and considering that ninety-five percent of the movie revolved around him, that is a very good thing. Kathleen York isn't quite as good and does have a scene or two that she struggles with, but I can't really say that she was a horrific actress either. A little rough around the edges maybe, but acceptable. Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs has a bit of a Samuel L. Jackson vibe going on in both his character and his acting chops, and though I wasn't a fan of every last piece of writing that he was given to work with, the actor made it work to the best of his abilities.

Overall, Sublime is about sixty minutes of "pretty good movie" that manages to hold your attention if not demand it, twenty minutes of "So THAT is where they were going with this, perhaps this is a damned fine release after all", and ten minutes of "Why did they fuck up such a good thing?" I'm going to go with a 7/10 for this one: it's not quite a great movie, but it is a good one if you know what you're getting into.
Lucid Dreams #1: Lucid Dreams - added 12/28/2009, 04:26 PM
7/10 is a good rating for this.
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