Reviewed by: Andre Manseau
What's it about
Emily and Nate Weaver leave the city for the rural comfort of Nate's ancestral home in the country. Once there, Emily is plagued by horrifying visions and haunted by the ghosts inhabiting their isolated new home.
Is it good movie?
Emily and Nate Weaver leave the city for the rural comfort of Nate's
ancestral home in the country. Once there, Emily is plagued by
horrifying visions and haunted by the ghosts inhabiting their isolated
Fertile Ground sort of comes off like an imitation in the vein of
Amityville Horror, where the bright young couple moves into a new place
and things go weird while the husband starts acting like a maniac. Of
course, in this one, the couple moves into a childhood farmhouse, the
wife is pregnant (following an unfortunate miscarriage) and the evil
seems to be coming from an old skull that dug up. Oh, and this one
starts off with a weirdly intense and graphic sex scene!
Being a haunted house movie isn't always a bad thing, and these types
of movies can be quite scary. Unfortunately though, this one doesn't
pack enough of a punch and feels pretty tame throughout. The actors are
trying their assess off though, in terms of our main protagonists
Leisha Halley and Gale Harold. They weave a pretty good web of
emotions, and for the most part they're believable. In terms of feeling
like this one doesn't carry much of a punch, know that it's light on
gore, doesn't show off many scares and at times feels more like a
Halloween TV movie in terms of atmosphere.
If this were someone's first time to the party in terms of filmmaking,
I'd ilkely be kinder. Unfortunately, director/writer combo Adam
Gierasch and Jace Anderson had helped to script
far superior films like The Mother of Tears and the wonderfully bloody
Autopsy. What went wrong? As I mentioned before, the performances here
are good but the rest of the film is dull and uninspired. The ghost
stuff can get laughable at times, especially when Gale Harold slaps on
a hilariously bad wig to play one of his 'ancestors' who haunt the
The pace of the story is slow, the story has all-too-convenient holes
in it, and don't even get me started on the ending. The ending to this
film is a real dealbreaker that will almost certainly have you throwing
your hands up and saying "oh, come on". Everything just feels
a little pat, and there's not much here to surprise anyone. There are
even title cards in the movie that will literally spell out what's
going on ("Moving on"? "Strange happenings"?). Weak.
I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but there's not a whole lot more I
can say about this little movie. I know we're steeped in a culture of
jump scares and that they can get annoying after awhile, but this film
just doesn't capitalize on the opportunities set forth in front of it.
You'll ened up feeling left down and you're stuck with a plot that
begins to drag and drag while you're wondering why you didn't just slap
on House or The Amityville Horror instead. Despite a strong opening and
a few potentially chilling moments, this one doesn't stand out enough
and feels like it held itself back too often rather than letting loose
a bit more.
Video / Audio
The film is presented in 1.78:1 widescreen
and didn't look overly great in terms of quality, sporting some grain
Audio comes in Dolby Digital 5.0
and sounds acceptable, is mixed well.
The only extra here is a commentary track with
actress Leisha Hailey, Writer-Director Adam Gierasch, and Writer Jace
Anderson. It's informative,
although there are some dull spots in there with a bit too much dead
The only other thing is a brief Storyboard Gallery
that lasts two minutes long.
Ultimately, this one fails in comparison to the other After Dark movie
I reviewed, Seconds Apart. It's dull, familiar and full of problems,
despite a good effort from a good cast.