I watched a movie today on FearNET called Unearthed. It’s about a small Arizona town cut off from the rest of the world when a tanker carrying the fuel for the only gas station has an accident and all the gas is burned. The town sheriff begins to determine something strange is going on when animals and people begin being mutilated.
The basic set-up isn’t complicated. The plot isn’t tough to figure out either. If you’ve seen Alien, Jaws, or pretty much any horror movie you know the premise. A small band of survivors isolated with a monster of tremendous power and frightening as all get-out.
The movie was pretty bad. I don’t need to tell you the sheriff is a drunk because of an incident a year before involving a little girl who died. The sheriff blames herself and drinks to forget or calm or insert-your-own-excuse here. Of course the
incident is played back in a series of ill-devised flashbacks of a couple seconds each. (Of course it was an accident and the sheriff wasn’t to blame. We learn this right before the end of the movie.)
What I will tell you is, I’m sick to death of this cinematographic trick of shaking the hell out of the camera during filming. Holding it by hand, deliberately rattling it, whatever they’re doing. I think it’s supposed to emulate the realistic feeling of being in the scene the way it did when Steven Spielberg used the device during the opening scene of Saving Private Ryan, but all it does in these cases is make a bad movie worse. TV shows use it too and
I’m tired of it. JUST SHOOT THE SCENE, dammit! If you don’t want the audience to be able to see what the hell’s going on why make a movie at all?!
A lot of the movie is filmed in dim lighting too. Not a good choice. And the CGI looked like a couple of students from a local community college’s computer animation program did the work. The lighting didn’t match the environment, the monster was not believable (not to mention being pretty much a modification of the creature from Ridley Scott’s classic, the aforementioned Alien), and the characters? Well, let’s just say it’s not a good idea to use stereotypes as characters in fiction, either written or visual.
So I wasted a good hour and a half of my life watching this dog and all its fleas. I don’t recommend you do the same. *Sigh*
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