{January 10, 2009}   A stern warning

I was in Zavvi yesterday, doing my bit to ease the company through its clearout liquidation sales, and I picked up a couple of DVDs. I bought one DVD based on the premise, the blurb on the back, which sounded interesting enough for a horror movie:

“The Deaths of Ian Stone:

Ian Stone encounters a mysterious creature and is forced into the path of an oncoming train. Rather than facing certain death, Ian finds himself reborn into a new life where he is murdered each day by horrifying pursuers and will be forced to die every day until he can solve the mystery of his own life.”

The Deaths of Ian Stone

The Deaths of Ian Stone

For £2.50, I thought sure, why not. So I bought it and I watched it last night. After I patiently sat through the duration of the movie, all 84 minutes of it, I pressed the eject button, removed the disc, and made sure I would never watch it ever again.

The Death of the DVD

The Death of the DVD

This film starts off promising and, for the first 30 minutes or so, is actually pretty good. But it rapidly devolves into steaming pile of shit after that, when it transpires that our protagonist, the charming Ian Stone, is not a poor human in a bad situation, but rather the strongest “Harvester” ever known; a kind of immortal vampire that feeds on fear – until, of course, he finds true love and learns to feed on that instead, turning on his own kind. So they punish him by somehow stealing his memories and killing him over and over again. It’s never really explained why reality shifts on each death and he starts a new life all over (in order: hockey player, office worker, cab driver, an ex heroin junkie, a current heroin junkie), each less appealing than the last.

The Harvesters alternate between looking like normal human beings, albeit with a tendency to stare at you like a lunatic, to clouds of swirling black death with claws, to characters that look like they just walked off the set of the Matrix, kitted out in latex and sunglasses. And it is impossible to fear a man wearing PVC, no matter how many claws he has. He just looks like a berk.

From this...

From this... this? Seriously? this? Seriously?

Worse, when Ian Stone rediscovers that he’s a Harvester and becomes the harbinger of death for his own kind, I thought his “dark avenger” look was silly instead of intimidating. He looked like a Slipknot fan with too much make-up on, in dire need of a shower. I wish I could find a picture of how laughable it is, but a Google image search isn’t turning one up.

Anyway, I’ve droned on about this enough. Don’t rent this movie. Don’t buy this movie. I’ve shattered my copy of the film, and I’m going to keep it in my collection as a constant reminder not to impulse-buy films, even if they are at clearout sale prices.


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