From the Editor

Movie Review Archive

Thank you for checking out my movie review archive. I'm in the process of transitioning to something else, so I will no longer post new reviews to this blog. In the meantime, I will keep these reviews archived; these are from the fall of 2008 to April 2011. Please watch this blog for more info and keep in touch (you can still find me on Facebook and Twitter). Here's to more great movies!

Wes Singleton

North Texas Film Critics Association

Friday, October 8, 2010

My Soul to Take - D

Rated R for strong bloody violence, and pervasive language including sexual references, 105 minutes

Silly "My Soul to Take" lacks soul, originality

The only thing worth mentioning about the new horror film "My Soul to Take" is that it was written and directed by horror master Wes Craven. It's baffling that Craven would want his name associated with such a bad film, arguably one of his worst that he's both directed and written. There are a handful of decent jumps, but otherwise "My Soul to Take" is too long, not scary, terribly acted and just plain dumb.

In the sleepy northeastern town of Riverton 16 years ago, a serial killer called "the Riverton Ripper" with multiple personalities dies as he's taken to the hospital. On that same night, 7 babies are born prematurely, including his own son. Each year they celebrate the anniversary of their birthday and the Ripper's death, but his evil spirit has supposedly come back in one of the teens, when all start dying off. Is the person doing the killing really the Ripper's son, Adam "Bug" Heller (Max Theirot) or is Bug being framed for the murders by the real reincarnated killer?

You may not care much, given how preposterously dumb and contrived "My Soul to Take" is, and interestingly the film lacks real soul and originality. It starts off well with a chilling prologue, and there are a few scares along the way, but it won't take a rocket scientist to figure out the predictable ending, which might be figured out in the film's first few minutes following the prologue.

All the characters are types - the jock, the outcast, the Jesus Freak, the geek, the snob, the handicapped guy et al - stock characters that you'll find in just about any film in this genre. And the silly premise that all were born on the same day is even more implausible and just a silly gimmick to gather some teens up to kill.

Theirot, the fresh-faced actor and model from "Chloe" and "Jumper," tries to anchor the film as the outcast, but he can't do much with the Craven's bad script and even worse direction. The rest of the cast are unknowns and likely to stay there given they don't make much of an impression. It is worth nothing that the guy who plays the blind guy, Denzel Whitaker, is the son of Oscar-winning actor Forest Whitaker. Let's hope he moves on to better things than this.

"My Soul to Take" goes on much too long, only giving you ample opportunity to figure out who the killer is. Not only does it take your soul, but steals some of your time, as it will be wasted with this boring, awful and awfully dumb horror movie.