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Featured Blu-ray / DVD Review: Psych 9

February 19th, 2011

Psych 9 - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray

Less than a week ago, I finished reviewing the previous Ghost House Underground release, Stag Night, and found it to be worth a rental. Now the Psych 9 DVD has arrived on my desk, but will it be an improvement, or will Ghost House's rather mixed reputation strike again?

The Movie

After a pre-credit kill, we get to the plot of the film. Sara Foster plays Roslyn, whom we meet as she is interviewing for a job. She's looking to take the night shift at a hospital as it is in the process of being closed down. Her perspective boss is worried about having her on the night shift, as there has been a serial killer active in the area, but she doesn't mind. Her husband, Cole, also works the night shift as a cab driver and besides, she likes the solitude.

But the solitude is short-lived, as there is a psychologist, also working the night shift to help close down the psych ward, Dr. Clement. It's a good thing he's a psychologist, as she might need some help. She starts hearing strange sounds, seeing weird images on the security cameras, etc. Then when another woman turns up dead at the hand of this serial killer, who the cops are calling the Nighthawk, she starts to suspect it has some connection to the psych ward. Then she starts to think the killer might be one of the people in her life. Could it be Dr. Clement, who just seems a little too interested in her past traumas? Or perhaps her husband, Cole, who is a little too interested in some of the gorier records when he comes to visit her at the job. Or maybe it's Det. Marling, who is investigating the crimes? And what does it have to do with her past, her visions, and whatever is in room 9?

By the time you get to the big surprise, odds are your patience will be exhausted. This is a movie that is built on tension-filled shots of abandoned hallways, or what are supposed to be tension-filled. In reality, they are just long and monotonous. Maybe it's just that I've seen far too many movies that have tried the same trick by being creepy and atmospheric that it takes a lot more to draw me in. The central mystery wasn't presented effectively, the many of the characters were there simply to be red herrings. The main problem was, quite simply, it was dull.

It does have some good atmospheric scene, while some of the acting is worth checking out, but the script could have benefited from another pass to tighten things up.

The Extras

Most of the usual extras are here, with the exception of an audio commentary track. But there is a rather meaty 23-minute long making of featurette. There are also 36 minutes of deleted / extended scenes and 22 minutes of outtakes, some of which are more behind-the-scenes that outtakes.

I don't have the Blu-ray to compare, but given the gritty, low-budget nature of the movie, it doesn't feel like something that you need to see I High Definition. It doesn't cost an exorbitant amount of money to upgrade to, but it is not necessary.

The Verdict

The best part of Psych 9 is its atmospheric location. Unfortunately, even the effectiveness this part it muted due to the overwhelming number of horror films set in an abandoned hospital. It might be worth checking out if you are a fan of some of the cast, while the DVD and the Blu-ray have acceptable extras, but that's as enthusiastic as I can get.

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Filed under: Video Review, Psych 9