Saturday, February 6, 2010

Shattered Lives

Shattered Lives 2009
Director: Carl Lindbergh
Writer: Carl Lindbergh
Starring Lindsay Lieno, Joe Stezar, Skyler Caleb, Ellyse Deanna, Wendy Dominguez, Gary Kohn, Brianna Nakutis, Christina Rosenberg and Lucia Sullivan

This is yet another in what seems to be an interminable glut of DTV horror films from Lionsgate. I was hoping that this one would be better than Psycho Ward, but somehow this film is even worse. As if that is even possible. The film starts off really well, with a great opening of some dumb college guys getting slaughtered, but then it switches to some ABC after school special about bad parenting. The lead characters in the film are unsympathetic to say the least and the cake has to go to the mother of the little girl. I have not seen such an appalling mother figure since Faye Dunaway in Mommy Dearest. But, at least that is a entertaining film. This film seems to plod around aimlessly and you wonder if it is ever going to make a point and when it finally does you think to yourself "this is why I wasted 90 minutes of my time?" The use of the clowns at first I thought would be a nice touch, but all they are were annoying and added little if any suspense to the film. This is just a shoddily made film, and it seems no one knew what the hell type of film they were making.
The plot basics are this, 2 college buddies are watching a movie when someone comes to their door.. It is someone in a mask and it immediately begins to viciously kill the 2 men. We then meet Rachel (Lienn) a little girl with a mother (Deanna) who seems to resent her daughter at every turn. It seems the mother, Lisa, feels like she is in a horrid marriage and has been sleeping around with anyone she finds just to ease the boredom of her life. This makes Rachel very unhappy and she wants for her father and her to be happy, but her mom is a miserable person, who it seems is unable to love anyone, let alone herself. This starts to cause psychological problems for Rachel that develops in the appearance of 2 imaginary friends, clowns to be exact. At first they seem harmless, but not long afterwards they start talking Rachel into carrying knives around and goading her into attacking her mother. She finally succumbs to the clowns and kills her mother. Flash forward years later and Rachel is trying to come to terms with the clowns and what they have done to her mind. She thinks she is cured but they reappear. The question is will they cause her to snap or will she be strong enough to fight the urge to kill someone else?
This is a poorly shot and framed film. The direction by Lindbergh is laughable at best. The film changes direction so many times after a while you do not even care what happens, you just want the film to be over. The opening scene seems like it was shot with a fisher price camera and when he decides to throw a arbitrary sex scene in the film it just seems totally pointless. The script is even worse. The characters seem to have no motivation. For instance, Lisa, the mother is a horrible bitch but there is never any explanation for this, she just is. I would have liked to have seen some reasoning behind this. Also, the whole demonic clowns thing seemed pointless as they never did anything and whenever you thought they would the story switched to some other pointless and tertiary thing within the plot. The cast is not much better. Except for Lienno as the little girl they are all forgettable. She is a very good child actor and portrays all the varied emotions a girl going through these problems should show. I hope to see her in better things than this. Deanna as Lisa has by far the most laughable performance. She tries to be balance being mean and spiteful with being sexy and she fails miserably. They should have gave her part to Tara Reid instead, she would have given a Oscar worthy performance compared to the horribleness that Deanna subjects the viewer too. The SFX and effects are pretty atrocious too. The main use of them is in the opening scene and the kills are amateurish and cheesy looking. The clowns makeup made them look like bad rip offs of Pennywise. All in all, this is a poorly made film that leaves nothing to recommend it to anyone. Stick with Uwe Boll movies if you want bad but entertaining horror films.
This one gets 0 out of 5

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