Patrick (2013) *1/2
D: Mark Hartley
C: Charles Dance, Rachel Griffiths, Sharni Vinson, Peta Sergeant, Martin Crewes, Damon Gameau, Jackson Gallagher, Eliza Taylor,
IMDB Plot Synopsis: When a young nurse begins work at an isolated psychiatric ward, she quickly becomes fascinated with Patrick, a brain dead patient who is the subject of a mad scientist's cruel and unusual experiments. What starts as an innocent fascination quickly takes a sinister turn as Patrick begins to use his psychic powers to manipulate her every move, and send her life into a terrifying spiral out of control.
REVIEW: After the obligatory opening in which something bad happens, Patrick shifts gears to show us a young nurse (Vinson) as she applies for a job at a psychiatric ward that's cut off from the rest of society. How convenient that the principal setting just happens in the middle of nowhere!
On the outside, the film is set in a town in which it's always seems to be raining and the sun never shines. On the inside of this psychiatric facility, nothing seems properly lit. Lights are constantly flickering on & off. Water seems to dripping for no inexplicable reason. The place looks completely rundown, yet it's supposed to be dabbling in cutting edge research.
Our young nurse hopeful is interviewed by another nurse with red hair and pale skin. As horror films have taught us over the years, people with red hair and pale skin are always up to no good. As our young nurse hopeful is being interviewed, they are joined by the ward's primary doctor. The good ole doc speaks to the woman with red hair and pale skin in a hushed whisper. As horror films have also taught us, when people speak in hushed whispers, they're up to no good as well.
From the get go, Patrick presents a nightmarish type scenario. So what's there left to build upon? We know that this psychiatric ward is an evil place with evil people doing evil things. So when evil or horrific things start to occur, it comes as no surprise. Suspense, tension, unease and panic are things you have to gradually ease into and reveal layer by layer. You just can't rush into it. Patrick's fault is that it reveals its hand too early on and as a result, the film is stuck with nowhere to go. [Not Rated] 96 mins.
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