17 user 23 critic

Suspended Animation (2001)

Animator Thomas Kempton gets more than he bargained for when a snowmobile trip turns to terror in the wilds of Northern Michigan. Held prisoner by two cannibalistic sisters who try ... See full summary »


(as John Hancock)


(novel), (screenplay)

On Disc

at Amazon

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Troubled 13-year-old Julie loses her mother and must go to Indiana to live with her grandmother Karen. A former star of stage and screen, Karen has the early stages of Alzheimer's and wants... See full summary »

Director: John D. Hancock
Stars: Dorothy Tristan, Grace Tarnow, Elizabeth Stenholt
Drama | Fantasy | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A recently institutionalized woman has bizarre experiences after moving into a supposedly haunted country farmhouse and fears she may be losing her sanity once again.

Director: John D. Hancock
Stars: Zohra Lampert, Barton Heyman, Kevin O'Connor
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A New York press agent applies his show-business acumen to revitalize his ailing father's Indiana fruit farm.

Director: John D. Hancock
Stars: Marc Grapey, Rebecca Harrell Tickell, Tyne Daly
Weeds (1987)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

A San Quentin inmate, sentenced to life without parole, writes a play that catches the interest of a reporter.

Director: John D. Hancock
Stars: Nick Nolte, Rita Taggart, Ernie Hudson
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A surreal thriller that follows Paul, a troubled young man who lives in a rural house with his pregnant girlfriend. His world is turned upside down when her sinister mother Agnes arrives at... See full summary »

Director: Colin Downey
Stars: Patrick O'Donnell, Natalia Kostrzewa, Eddie Webber
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Young T.T. comes from Chicago to spend the summer in California. He slowly becomes "California-ized," while learning about love and life in the Golden State.

Director: John D. Hancock
Stars: Glynnis O'Connor, Seymour Cassel, Dorothy Tristan
Drama | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

The story of the friendship between a star pitcher, wise to the world, and a half-wit catcher, as they cope with the catcher's terminal illness through a baseball season.

Director: John D. Hancock
Stars: Michael Moriarty, Robert De Niro, Vincent Gardenia
Donner Pass (2011)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.6/10 X  

Donner Pass has a well-known and macabre history - the place where George Donner and his party got stuck in the winter of 1846 and were forced to resort to cannibalism to keep from starving. But what if it wasn't just history?

Director: Elise Robertson
Stars: Elise Robertson, Russ Russo, Joel Stoffer
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

An undercover cop follows a trail of murders where the victims died without a cause of death.

Director: Jason Satterlund
Stars: Josh Sumner, Jeff Hime, Jeff Wyatt Wilson
The Monkey's Paw I (2013)
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.5/10 X  

Jake is given a monkey's paw that grants three wishes. After the first two wishes leave his friend Cobb undead, Cobb pushes Jake to make a final wish.

Director: Brett Simmons
Stars: C.J. Thomason, Stephen Lang, Michelle Pierce
Scar (2007)
Crime | Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.1/10 X  

Joan Burrows returns to her hometown for her niece's graduation, only to be confronted by the serial killer she thought she offed years ago -- after he kidnapped and tormented her and killed her best friend.

Director: Jed Weintrob
Stars: Angela Bettis, Brittney Wilson, Tegan Moss
Happy Camp (2014)
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.9/10 X  

A man returns to the childhood town where his brother was abducted 20 years earlier.

Director: Josh Anthony
Stars: Josh Anthony, Michael Barbuto, Ben Blenkle


Cast overview, first billed only:
Tom Kempton
Hilary Kempton
Laura Esterman ...
Vanessa Boulette
Sage Allen ...
Ann Boulette
Sandor Hansen
Jack Starr (as Dan Riordan)
Cliff Modjeska
Clara Hansen
Philip Boulette
Fred Phelps
Daniel Mooney ...
Arnold Mann
Gary J. Mion ...
Sheriff Montaigne
Coroner / Production Manager (as Joseph Forbrich)
Dr. Leo Sagan
Denise Bohn ...
Correspondence 1


Animator Thomas Kempton gets more than he bargained for when a snowmobile trip turns to terror in the wilds of Northern Michigan. Held prisoner by two cannibalistic sisters who try unsuccessfully to add him to their long list of victims, Tom becomes obsessed with tracking down his captor's long lost daughter. The ensuing drama becomes perfect material for Tom's latest Hollywood screenplay, inevitably luring one cannibal sister back to her original prey. Written by <filmacre@netnitco.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Will Chill You To The Bone See more »




See all certifications »




Release Date:

25 December 2001 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Mayhem  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$1,900,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$3,285 (USA) (31 October 2003)


$6,869 (USA) (14 November 2003)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Most of the main actors had little or no experience operating a snowmobile. They underwent days of training before filming began. See more »


References The Lion King (1994) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

John Hancock sent me a copy of this movie, and that's about the only good thing I can say about it...
28 November 2003 | by (UK) – See all my reviews

I received a copy of "Suspended Animation" in the mail earlier this week. It was postmarked from a company in New York, with attached sheets of paper naming the cast and crew, and an interview with the director, John D. Hancock, from Phantom magazine.

I'm still not quite sure why I was sent a copy, and I'm not really that sure how I was sent a copy. I don't have any mailing address on my Website, and I don't have it listed publicly on the Internet. I can only assume the DVD was given to me so that I could review the film. But it's a puzzling affair of how that company in New York got my address.

The movie was filmed in 2001 and given a limited theatrical release in October of 2003. I believe that the DVD I received is a preview DVD of what will hit stores some time in 2004. Perhaps the company in New York thought I'd review the DVD, too? I suppose I can, although there's nothing to review -- it has fine quality and sound, basic picture menus, and a single theatrical trailer. It probably doesn't need much more.

The film is about an animator named Tom Kempton (Alex McArthur), and his fascination with his own kidnapper. It all starts when Tom and his buddies are out on their snowmobiles during winter. Tom gets behind and flips his snowmobile when he's trying to catch up; he seeks shelter in a nearby log cabin, which is home to a pair of strange sisters -- one rather obese and the other frail and sickly. They slip Tom a drug and he wakes up tied to a chair. It's then that he realizes the sisters are cannibals, and that they plan to make him their next meal.

After making a daring escape with the help of his friends, Tom finds himself unable to move on with his life. He can't think of anything but the small sister, Vanessa, who kidnapped him and chopped off his pinky finger (which was successfully re-attached, or so I can only assume). Tom hunts down Vanessa's adopted child, draws her as a cartoon out of fascination, and eventually fights and helps murder her serial killer son, Sandor (Fred Meyers), who has a pimple-popping scene so stomach-turning it could rival the most gruesome horror films.

The only thing worse than the killer getting up one last time for another scare is the two-killer theory. Here, it's a three-killer theory. There's a surprise twist at the end that leaves open one of three options: the remaining killer is one of the sisters, back from their graves, their brother, or Vanessa's daughter. And, if you're enough of a horror freak, you may even think it's Sandor coming back from the grave.

I've got to say that though the surprise ending didn't surprise me, I was expecting something else to happen. I expected something much cleverer and much more startling than what did happen at the end. I had worked out a complex theory of who the real killer might be and it never happened. By the time the credits started to roll, I wasn't quite sure what the message of the film was. First it starts out as a sort of "Misery Redux," then it turns into "Deliverance" on snowmobiles, then it turns into "Single White Female," then it turns into "Psycho," then it turns into nothing. Is the point that the gene for wanting to kill people runs in families? Is it that you should not dig deeper into matters already resolved? Or is it just a wandering horror-thriller that isn't sure what it wants to be?

The movie was penned by Dorothy Tristan, John Hancock's wife. It's based on her novel, which I have never heard of -- and now I can understand why. I'd like to give "Suspended Animation" a good review because I enjoyed the beginning as a sort of remake of "Misery," and I feel bad picking on a movie sent to me in hopes I would do the opposite. But if I followed that, it would be nothing but a bribe.

I won't be totally unkind to the movie. John Hancock, the man behind Robert De Niro's "Bang the Drums Slowly" and the cult family classic "Prancer" (also very dark), directs well -- for what it's worth. And to be fair, "Suspended Animation" has a few interesting scenes, but the casting of Alex McArthur never helps much, and the flimsy script only harms what could have been a really tense and scary movie.

2.5/5 stars.

18 of 23 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
where can I find this movie artiewrestler
2001 suspended animation poster in movie sixstringsmith
Discuss Suspended Animation (2001) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: