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Overall Rating

Awesome: 0%
Worth A Look: 0%
Average: 0%
Pretty Bad: 12.5%
Total Crap87.5%

1 review, 2 user ratings

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Unseen, The (1981)
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by Jack Sommersby

"Unctuous 'Unseen'"
1 stars

Even for the undemanding, this will prove to be totally unsatisfying without any campy value that might have partially redeemed things.

The Unseen, a low-caliber horror flick about nothing more than a trio of beautiful women being systematically terrorized inside a creepy house by some rather unsavory folks, is distressingly lame and very poorly acted to boot. In fact, the imagination level is so sub-par you wonder how the cast and crew managed to work up the energy to report to the set every day to partake in something so idiotic and insubstantial. It's not that it aims its sights so distressingly low -- a talented moviemaker could have added some panache and girth to partially distract from the facile familiarities -- but that it's all too content to wallow in the gutter with such rock-bottom aesthetic values without any consideration for what it's actually offering up even the most undemanding of audiences. Basically what we have here is TV reporter Barbara Bach on assignment in some small coastal town who's invited her girlfriends to tag along with her for some R&R. She wants to get away because she's having some trouble with her wealthy boyfriend and wants some solace in the company of her female comrades; but what she doesn't know is that the seemingly disarming Victorian they've rented some rooms in is owned by a family of perverts with a strong, violent man-beast locked away in the basement. During the course of one fateful night, the women are stalked and slaughtered and treated with more than their fair share of unpleasantness; but before they're all overtaken, Bach, who's a luscious-looking actress but can't read a line (she was totally inadequate as Roger Moore's love interest in The Spy Who Loved Me), manages to summon up the spunky strength to triumph in the end. Wow. The movie lacks tension and atmosphere, and most of the pacing is ungodly slack. The director, Danny Steinmann, has no earthly idea how to conjure up and sustain tension, so there's nary an iota of valid suspense carried over from scene to scene. Gosh knows the material isn't exactly challenging, except maybe challenging to make it play worth a damn; so the utter inability to rise to the occasion to deliver even the most passable of shocks and scares is just inexcusable. Steinmann must never have seen a horror movie that actually worked, because he can't copy even the basic fundamentals that even mediocre movies of this genre manage to somewhat deliver; scene after scene Steinmann doesn't seem to know what he's going for -- the camera angles and juxtapositioning would be just as suitable to an episode of Dynasty. And his movie sense is seriously skewed in that he presents the weird houseowners more for comedy than horror (they exude zero menace), and when the man-beast is finally revealed, he's just an overweight slob with bulging eyes and is about as scary as a fly on your drinking glass. The violence factor is disappointingly low, and skin-wise all we're afforded is a brief full-frontal undressing shot. All in all, a real lackluster cinematic endeavor, this

A real waste of time, people.

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originally posted: 01/23/11 02:08:25
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User Comments

1/06/03 Charles Tatum Yes, all mentally retarded people are really bloodthirsty killers 1 stars
1/06/03 Jack Sommersby Watchable but underwhelming. Still, the starring babes are hot (w/some good full-frontal!). 2 stars
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  18-Sep-1981 (R)
  DVD: 19-Aug-2008



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