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Dana Milgrom (Shauna Macdonald) is a track coach and mother who's survived a near-death car accident, only to find herself paralyzed and trapped inside her own body. Forced to communicate via an artificial voice program and hooked to a breathing machine, she becomes convinced that a terrifying presence called Nails exists inside her hospital room. No one believes her - not even her own husband, who think she's experiencing a mental breakdown. As her marriage disintegrates and her grip on reality starts to shred, Dana fights to convince the doctors and staff that Nails is real and intent on destroying her.Written by
Saw 'Nails', being fond of horror regardless of budget (even if not my favourite genre) and being intrigued somewhat by the idea. Being behind on my film watching and reviewing, with a long to watch and review list that keeps getting longer, it took me a while to get round to reviewing it.
Unfortunately, despite not reading any reviews purposefully before watching, am going to have to agree that 'Nails' isn't too good, though not terrible. A film that started off good, but ran out of steam very quickly and rapidly got worse by a second half that makes one not want to keep watching. Never judge a film without seeing the whole thing and wanted to give 'Nails', so gave it a fair chance.
'Ghost Nails' best assets were the first fifteen-twenty minutes, starting the film off on a promising, unsettling and atmospheric note that really does intrigue.
Production values did have some eeriness and nowhere near as cheap as expected, and the music, which not the most memorable in the world, didn't detract from the atmosphere.
The setting is effectively spooky and the acting was better than average (apart from Ross Noble, who was annoying), Shauna MacDonald being quite good.
However, so much brings 'Nails' down. The direction is so phoned in and pedestrian, one gets the sense that the director showed no interest in the film at all. Would have liked more chemistry between the actors, which can be put down to directing, tending to have interactions that are both static and awkward, and writing, which really doesn't flow, issues.
Where 'Nails' most underwhelms is the writing and story. The far too exposition-heavy writing is incredibly lazy, it's awkward in dialogue, very confused as a result of not tying things up or going into full detail and doesn't feel complete. The story suffers from a very limp pace after the first fifteen minutes and gets slower and slower until an interminably dragged out second half. It further suffers from feeling too much like a short film stretched out with a lot of useless padding, too many things that don't make sense or under-explained and tiresome repetition. The characters are nowhere near interesting enough, though MacDonald's character is reasonably likeable, and the inconsistent and illogical motivations bring them down. The villain's especially.
For a film billed as a horror, there is very little interesting and nothing remotely scary. They are too few and are far too predictable, anaemic and weakly timed to make impact, with the dull pacing and obvious sound effects cheapening them significantly. 'Nails' doesn't engage let alone thrill, the film started off very well but feels wasted by how quickly everything runs out of steam. The ending is an anti-climactic head-scratcher, like the script it feels incomplete and making sense of it was extremely difficult.
Overall, mediocre but with good points that stop it from being worse. 4/10 Bethany Cox
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