The Forsaken (2001) Movie Review
Written By: TJ
Edited By. Grave Reviews Staff
Director: J.S. Cardone
Producers: Scott Einbinder, Carol Kottenbrook
Writers: J.S. Cardone
Date Released: April 27, 2001
Kerr Smith as Sean
Brendan Fehr as Nick
Izabella Miko as Megan
Jonathon Schaech as Kit
Carrie Snodgress as Ina
Simon Rex as Pen
Phina Oruche as Cym
Alexis Thorpe as Teddy
Ratings: 1.5/5 Graves
***May contain some spoilers***
On his way to deliver a car in Miami, freelance driver Sean (Kerr Smith) picks up Nick (Brendan Fehr), a hitchhiker who also happens to be a vampire hunter. Nick is after a group of vampire led by Kit (Jonathon Schaech), believing that killing the vampire knight would save him from turning into a vampire himself after being bitten. The two come across a woman who is also bitten by a vampire, infecting Sean as well. Even though he was bitten, Sean develops a romantic attachment with the woman, making matters more complicated. Now the three of them are on the hunt to find the only solution they know, kill Kit and his entire bloodline or else they will all turn into undead creatures of the night.
One of many vampire flicks titled The Forsaken is just another forgettable film that wouldn’t stick with you for long. Even though it is an amateur film, there is no hiding the fact that there wasn’t enough money to go around the makeup and special effects department. Vomitted blood, inexplicable explosions, and naked upper bodies are basically what you will see mostly in the film. The Forsaken looms in dangerousness which will eventually lead to violence, thus the very nasty scene when a cop is burned alive. While it’s definitely not scary, the film is somehow gory, but the impact of violence is blunted by poor visuals and slack editing.
The Grave Review
Three years prior the release of The Forsaken, Vampires directed by John Carpenter was shown in cinemas. Now, these two films aren’t very different from each other and telling the same tale twice in an attempt to create an illusion of uniqueness is not really how show business works. The Forsaken received negative comments of not having originality, but come on, vampire flicks are usually the same story with different characters.
The Forsaken (2001) doesn’t offer much of interest aside from the intriguing and creepy opening twenty minutes and the story’s parallelism with the AIDS virus. It’s analogy with the AIDS virus has been associated with the film when it said that vampirism isn’t a curse, but rather a fluid and blood spreading disease. Another factor is the scene where Nick told Sean that the only treatment keeping the vampire virus at bay is drugs.
The Forsaken isn’t a horrible movie, but if you’re looking for a real scare then I don’t recommend this film. The story line is tagged as “borrowed” from all the other vampire flicks such as Vampires and Near Dark. And for the record, the latter two are better when it comes to overall film production.
The performances of the actors are workmanlike, no one really stood out. They are an enjoyable cast, no doubt about it, but they didn’t seem to fit on a horror movie. In fact, Megan (Izabelle Miko) doesn’t do much in the film aside from looking drugged and showing some flesh. The plot plummeted from an interesting start to a hackneyed car chase through the desert with our protagonist always just one step ahead of the vampire pack. The main dilemma of this film is that it lacks creativity and as the story line presses on, it just grew and grew more preposterous.
The Forsaken (2001) is visually dark but the film works cleanly without relying too much on computer graphics. Reasonably good, but it’s simply too familiar, too derivative, and too inferior to its predecessors to even exist.
The writing and directing of J.S. Cardone is passable. However, he squanders his wayward energies into repetitive, graceless action and unnecessary violence. Uses pretty boys as a lure, this film is either forsaken or just plain neglected. The Forsaken is the first film to obtain a wide theatrical release by Cardone who honed his talent on low-budget films, and I just wish he had done better.
For the foregoing reasons, Grave Reviews gives The Forsaken (2001) one and a half graves out of five graves.
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