Director – Chris Sivertson
Cast – Marc Senter, Shay Astar, Alex Frost, Megan Henning, Robin Sydney, Michael Bowen, Ed Lauter, Dee Wallace
Release Year – 2006
Reviewed by John of the Dead
It seems to be a growing trend these days to adapt the literary works of horror author Jack Ketchum into full length films. The most notable adapted effort of Ketchum’s work was the great 2007 film The Girl Next Door and the most recent effort, Red, has opened to good reviews. Often overshadowed by the graphic and successful nature of The Girl Next Door is the first adapted Ketchum story, The Lost. Prepare for one of horror’s most sociopathic killers to date.
Four years prior to the events in this film, 19 year old Ray Rye was hanging in the woods with two of his friends when he took notice to two girls cuddling at a nearby campsite. Under the influence of alcohol, in possession of a rifle, and the beckoning question of “what does it feel like to kill someone?’…Ray shoots the two girls. Fast forward to present time and Ray still has not been charged for the crime. Veteran detective Charlie Schilling(Michael Bowen) knows for a fact that Ray committed the crime, yet has been unable to prove it. When the significant other of one of his closest friends catches Ray’s attention, blah blah realizes that he has to put Ray away for good before he harms any other people. Det. Schilling begins to push Ray harder and harder, making his life a living hell as often as possible. In addition to this Ray falls for Katherine, a cocky yet beautiful darling that appeases to every one of Ray’s senses. When things don’t work out between Ray and Katherine, he finally loses his cool…and welcome to one of horror’s best final acts ever.
This flick gives us one of the most sociopathic killers I have ever seen, and lets us delve into his world and the chaos that brews in it. I really liked how writer/director Chris Sivertson wrote in a lot of character development for Ray, which made him probably the most developed killer to date for a single film(non-franchise). Ray’s brittle yet hard-assed nature made him a fun character to watch, especially with the little things he does such as putting crushed beer cans into his boots so that he’ll appear taller. Mr. Sivertson really has guts for adapting and directing some pretty violent scenes towards the end of the film. I personally loved them and felt the showed the brute tenacity of what a true sociopath would be like in real life, and go farther than most horror flicks have to guts to go. Bravo on that.
Aside from the development of this awesome character, the rest of the storyline is pretty interesting. We get a fair amount of different characters thrown into the mix to liven up the story, and that helps a lot given this film is 119 minutes long. When I first noticed how long this film was I thought to myself “lets see if this one drags or not” and sure enough, it didn’t! Sure not the entire film is action packed, but every time Ray is on the screen he keeps you entertained and subdued from distractions.
One thing that really surprised me about this film was the acting performance by Marc Senter. He put on one of the greatest horror performances I have ever seen, and had me thinking “who the heck is this guy?”. Considered a “nobody” by Hollywood standards, I can see this guy setting a strong footing for himself in the horror community, and his appearance in the recent film Cabin Fever 2: Spring Fever seems to prove that true for the time being. Michael Bowen did a fine job as Detective Charlie Schilling, and that does not surprise me one bit. Mr. Bowen has graced the screen on such epic films like Magnolia and Kill Bill: Vol. 1. It also seems this film has launched his horror career as well. After appearing in this film he has appeared in Autopsy, Deadgirl, the remake of The Last House on the Left, and also acts alongside Marc Senter in Cabin Fever 2: Spring Fever.
I have no major complaints for this film. I personally would have like more kills and gore out of Ray, but only because this guy was so awesome at what he did. The ending for this film left me conflicted, it was simple but at the same time slightly unfulfilling and anticlimactic. We get one of horror’s most incredible ending sequences and then for the film to end the way it did, well…I wasn’t satisfied. Oh well.
Overall, this is a great horror film that brings a new and very brutal sociopathic killer to the genre. Check this out if you are looking for a fresh film with a great killer or are a fan of Jack Ketchum’s work.