Friday, May 29, 2009

Sam's Back and it's a classic...

After waiting for what seems like forever, I finally saw Drag Me to Hell tonight. Sam Raimi's long-gestating return to horror, DMTH is a welcome antidote to all the slasher flicks and torture porn that comprises the horror genre these days. This is a good old-fashioned, scare-you-silly horror film that grabs you in the first ten minutes and never lets go.

Alison Lohman plays the unfortunate Christine Brown, who makes the mistake of turning down an old lady's request for an extension on her house loan. Christine is a nice girl who is usually a soft case, but under pressure from her boss, with a promotion at stake and slightly icked-out by the decrepit Mrs. Ganesh, she says no. "You will soon be begging me!", Mrs. Ganesh spits - and so it is as all manner of terrible things start to beset Christine and her boyfriend Clay (Justin Long). Clay's a psychology professor who doesn't really believe in things like spirits and psychics - but soon he has no choice as his cursed girlfriend is attacked by unseen forces, coughs up a fly during a formal dinner and suffers the nosebleed from hell (literally).

Can Christine get the curse removed - or tranferred to someone else - before her three days are up and she is dragged to hell? We sure have fun finding out. The audience I saw this with got wound up very early on and several times everyone screamed at once! By midpoint Raimi already has your nerves in such shreds that a banging metal gate takes on terrifying connotations. The best scenes for me are a seance sequence that takes a truly insane turn and an etiquette lesson on discovering an eyeball in your dessert.

It's great to see a master back doing what he does best and I can't wait to see what Raimi comes up with next. In the meantime, enjoy the thrill ride that is Drag Me to Hell.

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