Monday, November 19, 2007

Crazy Eights (2006)

Note: This review is part of my coverage of Horrorfest II.

Crazy Eights

This movie was a bit of a mindfuck. Some of it had a kind of Silent Hill atmosphere, with the broken down sets and the hints of bizarre medical experimentation. It also reminded me somewhat of last year's The Abandoned, with the whole idea of the characters trying to solve an important mystery about their childhood, only to apparently meet their doom.

From what I can piece together, the idea is that the main characters are members of a group of 8 people (the "Crazy Eights") who were tested on as kids, in some kind of unsavory scientific experimentation, that may or may not have something to do with autism and instilling the kids with a sense of guilt. None of the characters remember any of it, but one of them dies just after uncovering a trunk of items that was buried by the kids as a time capsule - apparently waking up some kind of psychological horror in the process. The characters gather at the funeral, and at the deceased's last request, they take a look at the trunk. They then get themselves trapped in an old condemned house in the middle of the forest, which hides a rundown medical laboratory of some sort. As they try to find the way out, things get weirder and people start dying as they gradually remember what happened to them when they were children.

As I understand it, the eight managed to escape from the testing facility, placing the smallest girl in a trunk for hiding. They promised to come back for her, but when they did, it was too late. Now they have that guilt on their consciences, and it seems that the ghost of the girl has made a point to seek redemption by taking the lives of the remaining 7 in the group.

As it stands, I was a little disappointed that they didn't dig more into the childhood experimentation, instead of this guilt trip they introduced. However, there may be more to this sordid little tale than is at first apparent. It's clear that the scientists were doing experiments involving the brain, and quite possibly the manipulation of thoughts, or even realities. So did this whole ordeal happen as is, or was it some kind of test set up by the experimenters? The odd and confusing ending seems to suggest the latter. This film definitely demands at least another viewing, and perhaps a bit of discussion to unlock. I like a film with a challenging concept, but maybe there could have been some better explanation provided. Still, this movie was very interesting.

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