I definitely didn't have that many high hopes for "Autopsy". I mean the story is pretty standard anymore and with the general 'too big for its own britches' theme for this third year of After Dark Horrorfest, I just wasn't expecting Shakespeare here. For the most part I'm glad I didn't get my hopes up, but there are some redeeming qualities to "Autopsy" that I didn't see coming and was pleasantly surprised with.
This film centers around a group of college pals (2 girls/2 guys) whom go to Mardi Gras to party it up. They meet a random Russian foreign student whom tags along when they decide to go for a ride drunk. Surprise surprise, they wreck on some backass Louisiana road and when an ambulance arrives it takes them to hell. Or at least a hospital that is only half a step above third world country standards, where a crazy doctor (played by genre man Robert Patrick) is doing some crazy shit!
So I like to start with the goods of each film and this one does have some pretty impressive sides to it. I have to give Adam Gierasch some credit where credit is due. At first, I figured this was going to be pretty straight up and run of the mill as the first half hour is your standard fare for Horror. It's when they get to the hospital that I was surprised. He pulls off some pretty cool shite there as he focuses on the nightmarish feeling that the hospital puts off. Odd angels of camera shots, ridiculous set designs, and very colorful lighting (think of old school Italian concepts of reds, greens, blues, and yellows like "Suspiria") just make this a visual monster once there. It's a wonderful contrast to the opening hum-ha style and it works like a charm. I was very impressed with how the film progresses into the nightmare, the wandering patients and emptiness, and it was a feast for my senses and he deserves mucho credito for that. Unfortunately, I didn't dig how nightmarish it gets by the end (its seriously to the point of not making a lick of sense anymore with randomness) but getting there was a hell of a ride.
On the frustrating side of the tracks some some of the acting performances (pretty much everyone sans the main girl whom holds her own for the most part) which tend to be a bit surface to the giant leaps in story and logic that the film makes. Actually, most of the issues that this film has come from its rather shallow script. There is so little character development that most of the characters I could give less then two shakes for (especially that Russian guy...what the hell was his purpose?) and when we do get some about half way through the film I already didn't care.
This was a decent film on the most part and I can't say I was completely bored with it, but its oddly shallow script undermined so much. Had it not been for its rather fun visual style I probably would have given up on it half way through. The dark humor did have its moments (with the three way stare down with the cop was pretty awesome) I will admit and that kept me keen too otherwise this is pretty lack luster.
Written By Matt Reifschneider
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