Psychosis - DVD Review

'a down and dirty horror film which tries to hide its clichés by experimenting with a sexual undertone in the most lewd and unsatisfying way possible'

Approaching Psychosis with basically little knowledge of what it was or how it came into being, the opening fifteen minutes surprised me by being actually rather decent, if slightly paint-by-numbers, horror. Five peace activists are camping out in the woods, intent on stopping a motorway being built through it. There's someone watching them from the bushes. Cue some basically well shot and tense slasher moments, albeit rather amateurishly acted by the star-less cast.

Unfortunately, as the film moves on, the directing, tone, style and plot all start to slowly slide down until they're on a par with the acting which, Charisma Carpenter aside, is abysmal throughout. This is a shame because you can see how Carpenter possibly thought this might be the film to put her back on the map, having done little of a permanent or notable basis since Angel finished back in 2004.

What was needed for that to happen however, was at least a half-decent co-star which she doesn't get in the form of British model Paul Sculfor, turning in a mumbling and entirely unconvincing performance as Carpenter's spouse. Elsewhere, Justin Hawkins (yes, he of The Darkness) turns up for no apparent reason other than to say he's been in a film and extra support from Ricci Harnett, Ty Glaser and Bernard Kay threatens to materialise but never does.

It all makes for what in the end is a rather painful viewing experience of a down and dirty horror film which tries to hide its clichés by experimenting with a sexual undertone in the most lewd and unsatisfying way possible. Writer/Director Reg Traviss has an ending which he's obviously proud of but by that point, it'll be a miracle if you care and more a case of luck than judgement if you're still awake. Deeply disappointing, wavering in almost every department and one of those films where the only plus point one can find, is the musical score.




Psychosis is out on DVD in the UK from 19th July

Look further...

'You know a film is on the wrong track when a key scene involves a scraggly baddie exposing his penis to the heroine, and the film’s tone (and music) suggests we are not supposed to laugh' - Obsessed With Film

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