OUTTAKES REPORT CARD
MOVIE: ABANDONED MINE 10/01/2013
“Abandoned Mine” purloins the templates of several successful horror films, like “Halloween” and “Descent” and combines them into a mishmash of trite and predictable storylines. Director, writer and producer Jeff Chamberlain receives kudos for his indie endeavor, but he has a long way to go before James Wan needs to look over his shoulder.
It’s a set up we’ve all seen too many times; the town superstar sets up an elaborate Halloween prank to amaze his friends, and it all goes terribly wrong. The characters, like too many horror flicks these days, are comprised of older actors playing high school kids. The plotpoints and concluding twists are telegraphed too far in advance. You’ve seen this film before you actually watch it.
The surprise of this film was its actors. A band of relative unknowns, they do a credible job in presenting their characters. The material is weak, and this group, led by Alexa Vega, probably deserves better.
There is nothing spectacular on the technical side for “Abandoned Mine”. Lighting in certain spots is atrocious. It was probably meant to heighten the scary effect, but ends up being just too dark to see. There are a few carefully selected gore scenes, and they are done well.
There is an out-of-place Indian character. He has no connection with the story, save to present a multicultural element to the cast. Unfortunately, he looks and sounds like Raj on “The Big Bang Theory”, so I was expecting some type of punch line every time he spoke.
I love to see filmmakers in their beginning stages. While “Abandoned Mine” is simply too much carbon copy and not enough originality, Chamberlain demonstrates enough savvy to make his future endeavors worth seeing.
FINAL GRADE: D