Written by / 4/28/2014 / No comments / , , ,

HAMMER FILMS PRESENTS THE QUIET ONES

year: 2014 rating: **
Ever notice that pretty much anything spoken in a British accent winds up sounding intelligent?

Well this is the case of the legendary and now revamped HAMMER FILMS, who years ago brought already-established icons to life ranging from FRANKENSTEIN to DRACULA and recently reentered cinema with THE WOMAN IN BLACK, to use the "documenting handheld camera device" but with a more clever twist.

Plot has a England University Professor Joseph Coupland, played by Jared Harris, hiring a fresh and naive student, Sam Claflin's Brian McNeil, to film an experimental paranormal research taking place inside a rural building...

The experiment centers on a young girl named Jane, who could very well be demon possessed, and along for the ride are two more kids: a flirtatious blonde girl and another young man... These two seem like the typical victims served up in any horror flick while the pivotal Brian is the blank slate/non-believer, so everything we experience will be through his eyes, and lens.

The handheld scenes occur either for the moment or as archive footage viewed by teacher and students within the grungy confides of a makeshift labyrinth... Their ultimate goal is to watch the changes occurring outside (and inside) poor Jane, and then try pinning down that naughty spirit causing all the havoc. Meanwhile, Brian has become smitten with the subject, and the professor, with a grand touch of sleazy sinister about him, has his own personal desires.

While much of the film is grainy and retro, there are sporadic bursts of intrusively modern CGI, causing an awkward imbalance that throws the intended super-reality out the window... And being set a year after THE EXORCIST haunted theaters, several mentions are made of it, a possible attempt to distract anyone from calling this a pale imitation...

Unfortunately, that's all THE QUIET ONES amounts to... Beyond the all-too-familiar demon possession, the scariest scenes entail, ironically, quiet moments that suddenly burst with a plunder of noisy bedlam, none of which amount to a worthy hypothesis or conclusion.
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