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David Adams Murphy,
A warped and mysterious family are unable to leave the house they reside in for unknown reasons. When this strange brood decide to turn their captivity into a sick and violent game, it challenges their very reality and puts all of their lives in great jeopardy. Written by
The Type of Horror Film You Just Don't See Anymore
Director Richard Griffin's film EXHUMED is a dark, low-budget horror flick that succeeds on many levels. Shot entirely in RI (or at least entirely in Southern New England for sure), the movie is grim, nihilistic, and full of nice doses of black humor. To describe it best, it's almost like a "haunted house" movie about a dysfunctional family.
However, the film's greatest strength lies in its ability to feel fresh (though it does gain part of this edge simply from being made in a time suffering from a cesspool of banal films and an over-saturated film-market). Oddly enough, the film's freshness seems to come out in a weird (if seemingly contradictory) way by capturing the look and atmosphere of horror films of old. The micro-budget, black and white (often shot on one location), character centered horror films of the 60s. Director Jack Hill's 1968 flick SPIDER BABY comes off as the closest example of the type to EXHUMED and may have even influenced it. Despite being (welcomely) old fashioned, the film is set entirely in the present. EXHUMED is that kind of movie (sort of like say, PULP FICTION) that even though set in the present day for when it was filmed, feels strangely like it belongs in another time frame or even firmly in the film's own uniquely created world.
While Richard Griffin and screenwriter Guy Benoit deserve a lot of credit for crafting this great flick, cinematographer Ken Willinger and his crew deserve a huge shout out for providing some beautiful cinematography. The stark, low-key film-noir look to the film is pitch perfect and creates quite the atmospheric little horror flick.
EXHUMED isn't a perfect film by any means (performances are weak in some spots and the low-budget seems maybe a little more obvious than it could be), but it easily stands as one of the finest films (and possibly best horror flick) of 2011.
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