Patrick: Evil Awakens Movie Review
Written by TGM
DVD released by Phase 4 Films
Directed by Mark Hartley
Written by Justin King
2013, 93 minutes, Not Rated
Released on March 14th, 2014 (Theatrical) | June 10th, 2014 (DVD/Blu-ray)
Charles Dance as Doctor Roget
Rachel Griffiths as Matron Cassidy
Sharni Vinson as Kathy Jacquard
Peta Sergeant as Nurse Williams
Jackson Gallagher as Patrick
Stop me if you've heard this before. Woman takes a job at a run down mental institution. One of the patients, a comatose young man, is being routinely mistreated and subjected to questionable experiments by the facilities medical staff lead by the nefarious Dr. Roget (Charles Dance). The aforementioned comatose man somehow takes a liking to the nubile new nurse who showed him a modicum of kindness. He then starts telekinetically manipulating objects and people in order to kill off any would-be suitors vying for her affection. Hilarity ensues.
Patrick: Evil Awakens, a remake of a 1978 Australian cult movie, is a surprisingly enjoyable little horror flick, with a handful of genuine thrills that get unfortunately suffocated by a multitude of cheap pandering and trickery. I despise movies that try to elicit a scare based purely on ratcheting up the soundtrack with a well-timed violin-screech or pounding of the piano keys. This bush-league tactic is unfair to the viewer, and in Patrick: Evil Awakens, is just simply unnecessary. The script is competent enough and the setting is creepy as hell with the look of a mental hospital plucked out of a Hammer film from the 60s. There are just enough gruesome deaths (mostly implied, but still effective nonetheless) to hold one's interest. Some substandard CGI cheapens the affair, but is not a complete deal-breaker.
Now, a disclaimer, Charles Dance (Game of Thrones, Alien3, The Last Action Hero) is a personal favorite of mine, and could recite the phone book and manage to make it sound interesting. He's one of those few actors around today that have a poise and presence about them that absolutely command the screen. His appearance alone elevates even the most mediocre production into something worthy of your time. He chews through the pedestrian dialogue with finesse and gusto and is the sole reason why I'm giving this movie a better rating then it would otherwise deserve.
Just a quick thought on the female lead Sharni Vinson. She is without a doubt on the cusp of becoming a superstar. Patrick: Evil Awakens is her first notable appearance since her break-out role in the surprise horror hit You're Next. The camera absolutely freakin' loves her, and she can play kick-ass or vulnerable on the turn of a dime. She's like Rashida Jones' hotter, younger, tougher, more toned sister, and if her agent isn't pounding down Marvel's door to insist that she play the Wasp in the upcoming Ant-Man movie, there is simply no justice in this world.
Patrick: Evil Awakens is enjoyable, yet ultimately completely forgettable. While it will fail to satisfy gore aficionados, it is worthy of your time if you prefer your horror to be a little slower paced, old-school, and cerebral. Fans of films like The Others or The Sixth Sense would appreciate this film more than those of the Hostel, Saw, or Final Destination franchises.