HOME |  JOIN |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
mother!
God's Own Country
Unseen, The
Tonight She Comes
Chasing the Dragon
Into the Forest
Limehouse Golem, The
Frankenstein '80
Good Time
Bucket of Blood, A
Detroit
Hide and Seek
What Happened to Monday
River Wild, The
Veteran
Slumber Party '57
Juliette, or Key of Dreams
Summertime Killer
Sweet Virginia
Ben & Arthur
Your Name
Red Hot Shot, The
New World
Trick Baby
Weapons of Death
Second Best Secret Agent in the Whole Wide World, The
Kills on Wheels
Strait-Jacket
This Man is Dangerous
Burning Paradise
   
 
Newest Articles
Apocalypse 80s UK: Threads and When the Wind Blows
Movie Flop to Triumphant TV Revival: Twin Peaks and The League of Gentlemen
Driving Force: The Golden Age of American Car Chases
Madness in his Method: Jim Carrey and Andy Kaufman
Music, Love and Flowers: Monterey Pop on Blu-ray
The Melville Mood: His Final Two Films on The Melville Collection Blu-ray
Always Agnès: 3 from The Varda Collection Blu-ray
Re: Possession of Vehicles - Killer Cars, Trucks and a Vampire Motorcycle
The Whicker Kicker: Whicker's World Vols 5&6 on DVD
The Empress, the Mermaid and the Princess Bride: Three 80s Fantasy Movies
   
 
  Patrick Creepy ComaBuy this film here.
Year: 2013
Director: Mark Hartley
Stars: Charles Dance, Rachel Griffiths, Sharni Vinson, Peta Sergeant, Jackson Gallagher, Damon Gameau, Martin Crewes, Eliza Taylor, Simone Buchanan, Shane Nagle, Chris Fortuna, Rod Mullinar, María Mercedes, Camilla Jackson, Brendan Bacon, Carole-Ann Aylett
Genre: Horror
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: This Gothic old building in a remote region of Australia is home to a hospital, appropriately for its location housing patients who have been largely forgotten about by their family or friends, or merely do not have any who would be willing to visit them - or not have any at all. Among these neglected folks is Patrick (Jackson Gallagher) who like many patients there lies permanently in bed in a coma, largely unresponsive aside from the occasional tic or twitch. Into this depressing environment comes new nurse Kathy Jacquard (Sharni Vinson) who is introduced to the small staff: flint-eyed Matron Cassidy (Rachel Griffiths), far more friendly Nurse Williams (Peta Sergeant), and the head of the institute, the sinister Doctor Roget (Charles Dance)...

Just as Hollywood seemed intent on remaking all their old horror movies, and some of their newer ones for that matter, Australia got in on the act with Patrick which began life nearly forty years before as a Carrie-inspired yarn of telekinesis, a subgenre which flourished for a few years to take in the likes of Psychic Killer, The Dead Zone and another well-thought of Aussie horror, The Sender among many others. There was even an Italian unofficial sequel to this which gets a reference here, though you have to wait for it, but as far as Patrick went it was fairly fondly recalled for its way of taking a premise that could be rather absurd and going about it with commendable gravitas, not that it prevented the absurdity entirely.

In the case of the remake, it was that foolishness director Mark Hartley embraced wholeheartedly; the notion of a coma patient developing mental powers that could move objects and more importantly for the plot, kill people was very easy to portray in the most lurid terms possible, which was what the Italians had done, therefore Hartley appeared more keen on the European trash sensibilities than he was on the more muscular Australian strain of shockers that came out of the nineteen-seventies and -eighties. This was odd since he made his name with the celebratory documentary Ozploitation, something you had to presume had led him to try and find a cult property to refashion for a modern audience, and it wasn't only the Italians he was taking his cue from.

As the presence of a lush Pino Donaggio soundtrack indicated, Hartley was apparently imitating Brian De Palma into the bargain with setpieces where the title character wrought his mayhem depicted in operatic manner just as the director of Carrie would have done. Or at least how a fan would imagine De Palma would do it, because while imitation was the sincerest form of flattery, Hartley might have had the histrionics down pat, yet his tone suggested more enthusiasm than skill, with a preponderance of obvious computer graphics to achieve the effects he wanted. The original didn't have access to that, but on this evidence that was to its advantage since little took you out of the "reality" of a horror flick than blatant CGI, it was like seeing the puppeteer when you should be concentrating on the puppet.

Nurse Kathy followed much the same route as her predecessor, Susan Penhaligon in the source, and Dance's sadistic head doctor who pumped Patrick full of electricity in his experiments was at least a memorable display of medical arrogance, yet again subtlety shouldn't necessarily be a drawback in a chiller and this could have made more of the creepiness of the concept, something the original, though not perfect, capitalised on far more than this effort did in its mad dash to get to the horrors. Griffiths didn't get much more to do than essay a cut-rate Nurse Ratched, though Sergeant injected personality into what could have been a thankless second banana role, but it was Vinson who was our actual lead, again not bad but stuck with a rather vanilla heroine aside from Kathy's odd flights of fancy once she is caught up with Patrick's apparent plight. Underlining the computery aspects, he now communicated electronically rather than through a typewriter, not necessarily an improvement and likely to elicit groans when he starts sending texts. It wasn't dull, but too often lapsed into silliness.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 490 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Who's the best?
Robin Askwith
Mark Wahlberg
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
  Andrew Irvine
Ian Phillips
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Paul Shrimpton
Lee Lopez
Jennifer Thomas
Enoch Sneed
   

 

Last Updated: