Director – Dan O’Bannon
Cast – John Terry, Jane Sibbett, Chris Sarandon, Robert Romanus, Laurie Briscoe, Ken Camroux, Patrick Pon, Bernard Cuffling
Release Year – 1992
Reviewed by John of the Dead
The Resurrected AKA “Shatterbrain” is a film I had never heard of until recently(sorta, you’ll see), when a friend of mine described a scene of awesome horror he saw as a child. We could never figure out which film he was talking about, but thankfully after deciding to give this flick a watch our question was answered. H.P. Lovecraft adaptations have been hit(Re-Animator, From Beyond, The Call of Cthulhu)-or-miss with the horror genre, but thankfully this one is not only a hit, but the horror hits hard during some truly epic scenes.
In this film we follow John Terry as private investigator John March. One day Mr. March is approached by Claire Ward, a woman who’s formerly attentive and loving scientist husband Charles Ward(Chris Sarandon; Fright Night, The Nightmare Before Christmas) has turned into an obsessive fiend who has since moved out to carry on his eerie late night experiments. When she receives word that Charles’s neighbors have noticed him accepting mysterious late-night packages, and when evidence of decayed body parts arises Mrs. Ward hires John Terry to find out what exactly her husband is up to. With Charles being a scientist Mr. March sees this as just a misunderstanding of sorts, but his investigation will soon lead him to sights and events he never thought possible. Charles Ward has unlocked one of life’s biggest struggles, and along with that comes heavy consequences.
I really can never get tired of these properly executed H. P. Lovecraft adaptations. The fact that these great flicks always have to do with re-animation, demons, body desecration, and other ideas beyond many from Lovecraft’s time make these flicks excellent watches in regards to story and what we get to see on film.
Director Dan O’Bannon is no stranger to the horror scene, and his only other directorial film, The Return of the Living Dead is more testament to the talent this man possesses. To make matters cooler, while he did not write this film he has written some of horror’s finest films such as Alien, Dead and Buried, and a segment in Heavy Metal. Definitely one of the most lesser-known writers of his time, he also contributed the screenplays for Total Recall, Screamers, Lifeforce, Invaders from Mars. Simply put, the man is talented all-around, and it shows with this flick.
O’Bannon’s direction in this piece is awesome and he never holds back when it comes to the gore or the creepy sets. We get excellent dark and moody atmosphere, which helps set up some pretty creepy scares during the third act of the film, which is where we get some insanely awesome creature action. The look and mannerism of the creatures were unbelievable, and thanks to superb execution I feel they are some of the finest scenes of true horror that I have ever seen. To make matters cooler, we get some sweet transformation scenes thrown in throughout the film, which are spectacular to watch thanks to great live-action effects and once again…good execution. For a film in the 1 hour 45 minute range I never once found this flick to drag or really slow down to unnecessary levels, and that is thanks to great execution and of course…an engaging story.
Story-wise you are in for a real treat with this film. We get all kinds of horror thrown in; monsters, zombies, psychological horror, and numerous other elements that make this a captivating and engaging watch throughout. I really enjoyed that this film had a large investigational drive to the story, and I believe it is what truly made this film such a captivating watch. Watching John March and Claire Ward slowly uncover the horrors Charles Ward unleashed worked well for the film, and a tight screenplay from Brent Friedman(Synegor, Ticks, Necronomicon: Book of the Dead, Hellbound) perfectly paced each of the film’s developments and came with much highly interesting background info on the reasoning behind Charles’s madness. Of course, we can thank the mind of H.P. Lovecraft for giving us such a unique storyline, but I must really commend Mr. Friedman for adapting the story into a great screenplay that came with great horror, good dialogue, and amazing pacing.
Overall, this is an awesome watch that I recommend to all fans of anything H. P. Lovecraft related. We get superb direction and execution on all counts, and a story with many awesome elements that comes complimented by a tight and well developed screenplay.