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Directed by Christopher Lawrence Chapman
Written by Christopher Lawrence Chapman, Jeff Miller
Starring Danielle Harris, Katie Keene, Jeff Denton, Cher Hubsher, Crystal Cordero, Sharon Lanay Chapman, Chris Hahn, Isabella Sofia Menna, Philip Schene, Gene Michael, Khris Colgate, Dawn Hubsher
Find out more about this film here
No matter how hard Danny McBride and David Gordon Green are going to try to convince us otherwise, HALLOWEEN II had Jamie Lee Curtis trapped in a hospital and running for her life, unable to find a safe place. I mention this because of Danielle Harris’ important role in the HALLOWEEN series had her running for her life from a boogeyman, but she never had that harrowing chase through the hospital—until now. While the threat is different and she isn’t playing Laurie Strode’s long lost daughter, one can’t help but liken this to her version of HALLOWEEN II as Danielle Harris offers up a pretty powerful performance in the reality-twisting thriller INOPERABLE.
Harris plays Amy, a person trapped in a TWILIGHT ZONE-esque loop between being stuck in a traffic jam and waking up in a hospital full of maniacs and psychotic doctors out to get them. Amy seems to be the only one able to remember this GROUNDHOG’S DAY like loop and learns through these repeated attempts that she has to save the lives of a couple who are stuck in the hospital loop themselves in order to save her own.
While the repeated shifts between the car in the traffic jam and the hospital become frustrating, that seems to be the point of INOPERABLE as it seems to want to build on those frustrations in order to empathize with Amy and get caught up in the mystery behind how she got into this mess in the first place. The answers are there and when they are revealed, it proves to be a potent and powerful message about mental illness, the feeling of helplessness in the world, and taking charge of one’s reality. Through some pretty gnarly hospital horror effects and the claustrophobic feel of both the hospital corridors and the car (both of which Amy can’t seem to get out of) this turned out to be a movie that really crawls under the skin.
Harris is great here as the camera rarely loses focus on her. Her mounting tensions are well conveyed and she really carries this film with a toughness, yet a vulnerability that makes you root for her to succeed despite the odds. Reminiscent of the mind-puzzle horror film BRAIN DEAD starring Bill Pullman, Bill Paxton, and Bud Cort, INOPERABLE is a twisting and turning nightmare that doesn’t let up until it’s powerful conclusion.
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