THE DEAD MATTER
Reviewed by: Andre Manseau
What's it about
A girl's brother dies and she tries desperately via supernatural means to contact him. Of course, she comes across an old scarab charm that gives one the opportunity to control the dead, and a whole legion of them at that. Unfortunately for her, there are a couple of vampires who have been feuding for centuries over this very charm. This poor girl can rely only on her friends and a vampire hunter to solve her problems.
Is it good movie?
Now THIS is what you want every single time you see an indie horror flick. I am all about psychological stuff with meaning, but I LOVES me a good comic-book esque horror yarn that uses practical effects and feels like a nasty Halloween party.
This here is a flick that is dripping in atmosphere and brings style by the gory bucket full. Can I let you in on another juicy tidbit? Well, I will. Andrew Divoff (with a crappy looking wig) and Tom Savini play the vampires in this film. Not only that, but this one actually has a fun and layered story to it, with characters who aren't completely ridiculous. Sure, the main character played by Sean Serino isn't always the brightest, but most have pretty good characterization and are believable enough. They don't waste time in this flick trying to weigh it down with mumbo jumbo, and the movie clips along at a good pace.
There's a lot for horror fans to enjoy here, with a ton of winks and references to other horror films and series. There are also a few good laughs from one of the characters who gets turned into a zombie, too but it isn't too much. Don't even get me started on the dream sequences. They're awesome.
I would also like to mention the film's score, which is fantastic and atmospheric, as well it should be, coming from Midnight Syndicate, a company which usually composes Halloween scores. I don't want to spoil too much, because you need to check this movie out. It's a ton of fun, has great blood and guts, some hot lead characters, wonderful scenery-chewing horror actors and a sense of fun about it. What more can I say?
Video / Audio
The movie is presented in 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen and looks really sharp, which benefits the special effects.
Audio is also mixed in Dolby 5.1 and sounds wonderful, with booming bass and shrill screams in all the right places.
If you're into this sort of thing, you can do the Interactive Behind the Scenes footage, which lets you watch all kinds of stuff while you watch the film. It is chock full of interviews, alternate takes, art and original filmmaking from the director as it goes along. Good stuff, although the ability to watch it separately would be neat.
There's also a feature commentary from director Ed Douglas and producer Robert Kurtzman. He tends to say a lot of the same things mentioned in the prior feature, but has a lot to say regardless. It's worth a listen but not a must-watch.
There's also a few music videos from Midnight Syndicate, Lost and Dark Legacy and The Dead Matter by Eternal Legacy.
There are also three contest winning videos that pay tribute to Midnight Legacy and they're actually really creepy. This is the kind of stuff I like watching on DVDs.
You can also find a US theatrical trailer for this film and a few outtakes to round out the disc!
Can you tell I'm coming off a bit of a high from watching this film? I really had fun with this movie and think that more people should be watching it. I would have had a ball watching it in theaters and I'm sad it didn't make it that far. Find this and watch it, what are you waiting for!?