Sunday, March 20, 2011

Brutally Brilliant Bereavement

The Verdict:
*But I suggest only if you're into extremely brutal horror because the murders are extremely brutal. Also, if you can't stomach a young child being tortured and doing some of the killing, this isn't for you.

Bereavement is simply a perfect horror film--- as horrific as a great horror film should be--- from beginning when little Martin Bristol is kidnapped by serial killer Graham Sutter (a terrifyingly great Brett Rickaby, The Crazies)--- to the end where young Martin (disturbingly (in a good way) played by Spencer List) has taken over Sutter's murderous throne.
The prequel to the wonderfully scary 2005's Malevolence, Bereavement tells the back story of its killer, Martin (who is a young man in Malevolence) and very importantly the story of Martin's abductor/teacher in the art of killing.
Bereavement intertwines Martin and Sutter's twisted tale with a new-to-town teen girl Allison (Alexandra Daddario, Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief) and the relatives who have taken her in since her parent's suddenly died, plus their bad boy neighbor William (Nolan Gerald Funk, X2) who has a crush on Allison at first sight.
Bereavement, as brutal as it is all together, is soft at some moments, with the authentic seeming budding romance developing between Allison and William--- which tragically doesn't develop fully.
Bereavement's brutality is what makes it brilliant.
I don't think I've ever seen so much stabbing in any horror film--- and not cheesy stabbing either--- extremely vicious, seemingly realistic stabbing that makes you feel for the character being sliced and diced.
The torture of young Martin by Sutter are probably the most disturbing scenes in Bereavement. Martin's face and arm is slit and a knife is stabbed into his hand! Watching Martin kill is also very unsettling.
By the end of Bereavement, the body count is tremendous.
Who I expected to hopefully still be alive by the end vs. who actually is alive by the end is shocking.
Although blood and gore fills Bereavement, there are startling gorgeous scenic shots and even of killer Sutter (one of the best shots of the entire film is of Sutter standing on top of a roof in shadow almost, looking out at a pink filled sky).
Bereavement maybe part Psycho (Sutter hated his parent, his father and "sees" him even though he's dead) part Halloween (little Martin becomes a killer), part The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (Sutter does his killing in a meat packing plant), part Jeepers Creepers (Sutter drives a creepy old vehicle), part Hostel (Sutter hangs up some of his victims in tortuous contraptions)--- but it stands in a horror class by itself at the same time.
The idea of making Martin a child who can't feel pain (due to congenital insensitivity) who happens to be kidnapped by a serial killer who grooms him to be a mini him, is genius.
Also fresh, is giving the audience a peep into the mind and world of a "real" killer.  Sutter isn't hidden behind a mask like most killers in horror today and can't be killed--- instead, his face is clear as day and as inhuman as he is, he's human. 
He even speaks! 
Most killers in horrors just breath heavy or barely talk. Sutter rants nonsense due to him being crazy, but it makes him more realistic. His most chilling line is, "If they have no feelings they can't know fear. But if they can't know fear, why do they run?" (This would have made a great tagline for the movie poster!)
Bereavement's director and writer, Stevan Mena has outdone himself with Bereavement.
A following part, which would make the Martin Bristol/Graham Sutter story a trilogy, is supposedly in the works in the future.
Perhaps more of Sutter's back story will be revealed how he got his start into the business of murdering people. 
Malevolence and Bereavement (I wonder what the next, unlikely, great title will be?) fans will be impatiently awaiting! 


*Fun Film Facts*

~The original cut of Bereavement was almost 3 hours long.
~Director and writer Stevan Mena also composed the score to Bereavement.
~Martin Bristol, played by Spencer List, has a twin sister, Peyton List, who plays Wendy in Bereavement, the half-sister of Allison.


No comments:

Post a Comment