Last night I took a chance on a horror movie on Netflix, they have a large selection of so-called indie horror films licensed to view which means wading through a lot of crap. I can’t call The Abandoned crap, but it is disappointing and a waste of time. Without trying to give too much away, it’s one of those movies where they try to pull a M. Night Shyamalan on you. Trick endings either work or they don’t and even when they do work you don’t feel like watching the movie twice, or at least I don’t. I’ve only seen The Sixth Sense once because if I watch it again I’m going to know Bruce Willis doesn’t realize he’s dead throughout the entire picture.
The main reason I took a chance on it was because it’s about a night shift for two security guards. I worked security for 3 months or so when I got out of art school, pretty much all night shifts, and it was interesting to say the least. I often didn’t have a partner so it was easy to get spooked and yet I was that idiot who tended to explore dark passage ways or stairs that led into the unknown or walk the upper floors of business buildings out of boredom. I never did see a ghost, but then maybe that’s because I’m not superstitious.
The Abandoned does star Jason Patric of The Lost Boys who is real dick as Dennis Cooper, grumpy, handicapped night security man. This was a plus for me as I’m a fan of The Lost Boys and his role in it. I guess Patric has been starring in several movies over the years, but I don’t recognize any of them on his filmography after the aforementioned film except for Rush and Sleepers. I always thought it a shame that Kiefer Sutherland gained more fame after The Lost Boys than Patric. I prefer Patric’s acting abilities and from what I’ve heard Kiefer is a real life dick–but then he’s also an alcoholic which I guess explains it. The other character is Julia Streak played by Louisa Krause, a young unwed mother who needs the security job to make sure social services doesn’t take her child away. Which explains why she puts up with Dennis Cooper’s burping and verbal abuse.
Now if The Abandoned had kept it simple instead of going for the trick ending they might have had a good B movie with ghosts. The relationship between grumpy male security guard with a naive young girl security guard solving a mystery was working. Fact is, the story didn’t have to be about ghosts, they could could have done numerous things with the beautiful interior of the building they were guarding: a murder mystery, a strange intruder, a creature feature… I can confess that I did enjoy about three quarters of the film until the plot stopped making sense and the trick ending didn’t do much to explain everything that happened.
Oh well, another bad movie to forget.