My Soul To Take – Review
Wes Craven finally returns to the directing chair after 5 years of nothing. His last notable efforts being Red Eye and Cursed (definitely not bow worthy pieces), but with Scream 4 currently on his plate and My Soul To Take releasing next week, does Craven still have it… unfortunately for this viewer, Craven hasn’t had it for quite some time now. Don’t get me wrong, I love Wes Craven movies, mainly his early stuff, but I find most of his films are fairly formulaic. My soul To Take rides the familiar path of late 90s slasher flics like the “Scream” trilogy, and the likes of the “I know What You Did Last Summer” movies… There’s not a lot of originality here.
In the sleepy town of Riverton, legend tells of a serial killer who swore he would return to murder the seven children born the night he died. Now, 16 years later, people are disappearing again. Has the psychopath been reincarnated as one of the seven teens, or did he survive the night he was left for dead? Only one of the kids knows the answer. Adam “Bug” Heller (Max Thieriot) was supposed to die on the bloody night his father went insane. Unaware of his dad’s terrifying crimes, he has been plagued by nightmares since he was a baby. But if Bug hopes to save his friends from the monster that’s returned, he must face an evil that won’t rest…until it finishes the job it began the day he was born.
To begin with, the performances are pretty shallow, with paper thin characters that have fallen off the screen of so many other teen slasher flics. None of the actors stand out, and none of the characters are particularly memorable… or even likeable. The dialogue is terrible, so much so that I found myself not caring about anyone, which is the first sign of trouble in a movie like this. But wait… there’s also a huge character twist that just seemed forced from left field… I’m not gonna spoil it, but for what its worth, it’s unnecessary and doesn’t really add anything. It’s almost like Craven was looking for that OMG moment, but honestly, none of it matters, because like I said earlier, you don’t give a damn about any of the characters.
The story feels half baked, it’s pacing is all over the place, and it’s painfully predictable (if you pay attention). There is nothing new here! Craven’s taken a mash up of 90s slasher flics and churned out a weak clone of something we’ve seen too many times before. A group of teenagers being stalked by a killer for a reason that links them all together… Oh and plot holes… just too many to count. I mean c’mon, the blind guy climbing to a second story window… how’d he even know what address he was at… really… And the killer dispersing of the heavy handed jock (not spoiling anything, you see it coming a mile away), then lifting a girl off the ground, and gutting her, but when it comes to fighting the scrawny protagonist, the killer can’t seem to get the better hand. What makes it all even worse is that the killings aren’t even creative or graphic (if you’re a gorehound). If you thought the condor costume from the trailer was kinda cool.. it is, but its not used by the killer… just a school prank. When all the cards are down, My Soul To Take has some promising ideas, but in the end it just feels lazy and uninspired.
Then there’s the 3D…the 3D in this film is probably the biggest insult… what 3D? The 3D is almost non existent. When it does pop, its so minor, its pointless. 3D here, is just a money grab, a gimmick… it adds absolutely nothing to the experience except a headache and a higher ticket price. Also this transfer is dark… really dark, a problem common with cheap conversions. Don’t see this film in 3D, you’ll only be wasting your money! If its only released in 3D, wait for a DVD or Blu Ray release, because that’s what it is, just a notch above straight to DVD quality.
My Soul To Take is easily one of Craven’s worst films to date. Some might enjoy it for what it is, in fact I overheard quite a few comments where people did actually enjoy it. For the hardened fan though, this film fails to appeal on any level. Hopefully this isn’t indicative of what’s to be expected from Scream 4. I cannot recommend this to anyone as a theatrical viewing.