Brainjacked (2009) ***
D: Andrew Allan
C: Chris Jackson, Rod Grant, Somali Rose, Jillian Kinsman, Joel D. Wynkoop
Plot Synopsis: Teenage runway who suffers from painful headaches agrees to let a supposedly respected surgeon drill a hole in his brain to evaluate the tension, but discovers that the good doc has also implanted a chip that allows for mind control in his bid for world domination.
Review: This film has been discussed in many circles due to the amount of gore and nudity featured. So does it deliver in that area? It sure does as there is plenty of blood and gore to satisfy die hard gore fans. As for the nudity, it offers ample amounts, including some full frontal from its attractive cast. However, there's more to Brainjacked then just gore and nudity.
The film's central theme is about that sense of wanting to belong. Our main character, Tristan (played by an appealing Chris Jackson), has run away from home and has never fit it and has been beaten up and spit on. When he meets up with the mad doctor of the film, he is given a picture of this perfect utopia where everyone is happy, where everyone gets to go about living their dreams, where there is a sense of community. He is seduced by this ideal, because he has never had a sense of stability in his life and just wants to be part of the group and to fit in, even if that means having a hole drilled into his head.
Who hasn't at some point in there life wanted to be a part of the group? Who hasn't wanted to fit in? Who hasn't struggled with this at some point or another? This theme resonates with the viewer and makes one all the more sympathetic to Jackson's plight. When he discovers that being part of the group isn't all that it is cracked up to be and goes about for his search for individuality all while fleeing from the good doc's crooked clutches, again that resonates. Trying to find out who you are, what you are all about, they are universal themes.
In terms of technical execution, Brainjacked isn't perfect. The acting (from some of the supporting cast) ranges from either wooden to over the top. The visual look of the film is arresting, all the more considering that it was made on a budget of $35,000, but still needed another go round at the art direction table. However, what Brainjacked lacks in terms of technical finesse, it makes up for in terms of storytelling and narrative.
For most viewers, they will go in expecting a film all about a mad doctor, going off the trailer, but the main character is Tristan. This is his film, his journey. Director / writer Andrew Allan has token a universal theme and made a bold, gutsy move in telling of this character's search for belonging, then wanting to break away, and then finding himself. [Not Rated] 92 minutes.