Welcome witches and warlocks,
Today I will be reviewing the science fiction/horror feature RUPTURE by director Steven Shainberg. To best describe the story, I will turn to the IMDB plot summary:
“A single mom tries to break free from a mysterious organization that has abducted her.”
Those who read my reviews on any sort of regular basis probably know by now that I really enjoy science fiction. I am often drawn to films within this genre for better or worse. Seeing as this is a science fiction/horror movie with a stellar cast, I was pretty excited to check it out, but I left feeling as if there was more potential that didn’t make it to the screen.
One of the first truly notable things about this piece is the amazing pedigree of the cast who will be familiar to most people as they all have pretty much done work on the big screen and for television. Each actor does a great job in their roles, but the real star here is Noomi Rapace, who is the focus of the entire picture. Her performance is absolutely riveting and brings a sense of grit and loss to what occasionally devolves into ridiculous scenarios.
That is right; there are quite a few moments of unintentional humor peppered throughout this feature. Most of these moments start out as somewhat imposing, but a lack of context and repetition of the same movements or props make them seem more silly than scary. At least one of these things ended up being comical because it was never explained at all; making it seem as if they did it for completely aesthetic purposes.
Now, this focus upon aesthetics could be acceptable if, and only if, it ran throughout the whole film. Sadly, there is some truly terrible CGI in the back half that once again lightened what was otherwise a moody scene. This imagery is so outlandish that I have to wonder why they even bothered when they had already made their point without utilizing computers. I wish they had considered dropping the rendering entirely and I am fairly surprised that they left it in given the amount of work put into the other visual touches.
The sets alone were so eerily designed that the feeling of suffocation was palpable. As if the alienating, industrial sets were not enough, there were some well-designed mechanisms within the building that played upon the various kidnapped victims’ fears. While this could have come across as so industrial as to feel like every other horror movie; the lighting design cast an ethereal glow about the hallways. The surprising part about the illumination choices was that they perfectly married this visual flourish to the plot by giving the strange hues context within the story.
All in all, there is a decent story with some good ideas at play, but it is bogged down by strange decisions that lead to unintentionally funny moments. Even with the flawed material, the actors deliver good performances and the set design is perfectly imposing. Fans of industrial horror like SAW (2004) or the suspenseful beats of INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS (1978) will find some things to like in this flick.
RUPTURE will be in select theaters and available on VOD and Digital HD April 28, 2017.
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