Monday, August 7, 2017

The Autopsy of Jane Doe

Director - Andre Ovredal (Future Murder, Trollhunter)
Starring - Brian Cox (Penny Dreadful, Rise of the Planet of the Apes), Emile Hirsch (Bonnie and Clyde, The Darkest Hour), and Olwen Catherine Kelly (Darkness on the Edge of Town, Why Life Sucks When You're In Your 20s)
Release Date - 2016
Genre - Horror
Tagline - "Every body has a secret"
Format - Bluray (Personal Collection) (Screener)

Rating (out of 5):
     This year has been amazing in terms to quality horror.  I have seen so many great horror films and we just entered August.  We have plenty of year left and plenty of new movies to see.  Late last year press releases for the Brian Cox and Emile Hirsch horror thriller The Autopsy of Jane Doe started rolling in.  The press release was mostly for the UK release but I was still intrigued especially when I saw the poster and the cast.  It definitely looked like an unusual horror film and that really caught my attention.  Sometime passed since those press releases and Scream Factory announced they were handling the blu release here in the states.  I had to see it so I reached out to them for a review copy and they were kind enough to send one my way.  Thanks guys!
     The film follows father and son pair Tommy (Cox) and Austin (Hirsch) who are the coroners in a small town.  When a mysterious body is found at a crime scene it is brought to them to determine the cause of death.  When they start examining the body they discover that her wrists and ankles were broken but there was so other physical sign of trauma on the outside of her body. The deeper they look into her body they more peculiar things around the morgue and they soon learn they are not alone.  They continue to examine her and learn that she is actually not dead due to a ritual performed on her during the Salem Witch Trials.  Now, she will make them suffer like they did her...
     I went into this one with high expectations and the film was able to meet them.  There was several things the film did right but there was a few things I could have lived without.  The acting in this one is great.  Emile Hirsch and Brian Cox has great chemistry on screen.  They work very well together and really make the film what it is.  They don't pass as a father and son pair so it would have been more believable to just make them co-workers.  Their supporting cast, though minimal, do a great job at keeping the film's tension going.  Their characters are easily forgettable but they kept the story alive which is what made this film stand out.  The story for this one is very claustrophobic and a slow burner but there is a lot of character development and backstory worked into it so the customer doesn't get distracted easily.  Making the corpse a victim of the witch trials was very unexpected and I really enjoyed that addition to the film. The film slowly comes to a boil but once it gets a good pace going the film is damn near perfect.  My biggest complaint with the film is the silly attempts are jump scares featuring the witch's spirit with her lips stitched together.  It made the film cheap and knocks it back a few notches.  The film had a lot already going for it without added these cheap tricks to it.  Finally, the film isn't a gory one.  It does feature a damn fine looking autopsy and some gags here and there but the film's main focus is the story which is delivers.  Overall, The Autopsy of Jane Doe is a damn near perfect film.  The addition of of the CGI spirit or what have you did ruin some of the great atmosphere the film had but the overall film is worth your time.  Check it out!

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