Mirrors - Blu-ray Review

'here's a sentence I never thought I'd write: the scene in Mirrors with Amy Smart in the bath may be one of the ugliest things I've ever seen on film'

Here's a sentence I never thought I'd write: the scene in Mirrors with Amy Smart in the bath may be one of the ugliest things I've ever seen on film. It's also probably the only scene in the entire film which had me even a little bit excited because this turkey, directed by Piranha 3D's Alexandre Aja, is a complete mess from beginning to end; by turns predictable, slow, poorly scripted and utterly depressing.

All the genre staples are here; there's a creepy building, a man (Kiefer Sutherland) on his own, everyday objects behaving weirdly, early scenes of splatter-horror; but somehow, nothing ever quite gels and whilst all the above are present, they never seem to form a coherent story. Sutherland wandering around the abandoned building, for instance, is tense but how many times and for how long can you have him do it? Aja must know he can't rely on this but does so anyway, sapping all enjoyment and tension and strongly suggesting (rightly) that the plot really doesn't have anywhere to go from its creepy opening conceit.

In a final third that remains slightly unnerving but never enough so to thrill effectively, Aja trots out horror cliché after horror cliché and expects us to swallow them wholesale; why does Amy (Paula Patton) continue to go near something she knows to be dangerous, of course it's all something to do with a mental institue and, by the way, when did this turn into a sub-par episode of The X-Files?

The final shots, which show Aja was really desperate by this point, don't fit the rest of the film at all nor are they properly explained on any level, failing to alleviate the sour taste than had been percolating since Smart's ill-advised dip. The DVD extras see Aja's producer talking about initially hating the script but becoming more convinced about it as time went on. Should have stuck to your first instincts, sir.




Look further...

'the script is atrocious, combining laughable dialogue with a ludicrous and ultimately confusing plot' - View London (Matthew Turner), 2/5

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