Suspended animation is a story with a lot of promise. Fifteen minutes into the film and it looks like we’re seeing a Misery ripoff with a cannibal twist. From that point on I’m not sure if I’m watching Misery, Deliverance, or Texas Chainsaw Massacre. There are some truly suspenseful moments in the film, but they are spaced too far apart with needless muddled plotlines. The film style is eerily reminiscent of the Italian suspense masters like Brava and Argento without the gore. The Spaghetti Nightmares are an obvious …nfluence.
Tom (McArthur) is a Hollywood director of animated films. He is talked into a snowmobile vacation by wife and friends. When his snowmobile becomes stuck on the property of 2 demented sisters (Esterman / Allen) he is tortured and almost eaten. Years later Tom tracks down the daughter of one of his tormentors to model for a new animated film based on his experience when his past comes back to haunt him.
This is an adequate Dolby Digital 2.0 track. Dialogue is always understandable. Some of the music and background sounds fall flat. There’s no dynamic range here. Some highs distort a bit, although not to the point of distraction.
Suspended Animation is presented in a strange format. There are no provided specs, but the picture appears to be around 1.78:1. The picture is framed completely around. I had to zoom the screen about 1.22 to fill my 16 X 9 screen. I’ve never encounter this particular format before. You will find it an annoyance I hope First Run takes into consideration on future releases. The transfer is sharp and colors are a mixed bag. Bright colors can be a bit washed out. Middle colors like many blues and reds are near reference. Blacks are fair.
There is a short 6 minute behind the scenes feature. 2 still galleries finish the job.
I’d say Suspended Animation would make a decent rental during a slow release week. The acting is a bit uneven with McArthur reminding me a lot of Mark Hamil (after the face slashing). One character’s mixed brown and blue eyes reminded me too much of my Siberian Husky Athena (who by the way is a better actor). The Heavy Metal styled animation in the film’s intro and later representing Tom’s finished film are pretty nice. I would have liked more of it. If you decide to buy this one “you’re very brave”.
Special Features List
- 6 minute behind the scenes feature
- 2 Stills Galleries