This wasn’t what I’d consider John Carpenter’s best work, but it was pretty good. Carpenter knows how to scare without being overly gruesome or graphic, and this mostly works here. There’s a definite creep factor throughout the film, and the 1960s setting, from the outfits the girls wear to the medical treatments being used, serves to amplify this.
Plus the cast is good. Like, really good. I know I’ve mentioned I like Amber Heard before, and she was great as Kristen. The rest of the girls were also great — I’ve recently learned I like Danielle Panabaker a lot. And all of the medical staff were expertly creepy.
I think this could have been a bit better paced. Well, that may be an overstatement. The pacing of the movie was fine for the most part, but the opening credits dragged on for what felt like forever. I actually almost stopped watching the movie because I was annoyed at how long the credits were rolling.
The other problem that I’m kind of lumping in as pacing because I don’t know how else to articulate it…there was so much build up at the beginning about Kristen’s past, but then it wasn’t until the last few minutes when the big reveal happens and everything gets revealed. Like, everything made sense at the end, and it was an interesting story, but the lack of context after all that build up was noticeable and made the ending more of a jolt than a smooth twist.
That said, without spoiling too much, I think you could call this one quite literally a psychological thriller, and one that handles it better than some others I’ve seen.