I am not sure what to make of what I just saw, but I do know that I didn't like it. DEADGIRL is the story of two teens that stumble upon a chained woman in the basement of an abandoned asylum. Rather than reporting her to the police or freeing her, the one friend decides to keep her bound and use her for his own sexual desires. Things grow darker as the two discover that the girl is neither alive nor dead, but somewhere in between. By the end of the film, the plot touches on necrophilia, rape, blackmail, torture, murder, and every other sinister and depraved corner of the fractured human psyche. Every second of the runtime genuinely serves to irritate, enrage, and disgust the audience, so in many ways it achieves the emotive response that is necessary for a successful film. This potential is squandered by a lack of direction or purpose as the horrible actions of the male leads continue to go unpunished and unquestioned. As more people become aware of the situation, only a single character finds himself in a moral dilemma, and even his stance becomes rocky by the film's close. This drives an immediate wedge between the characters and their audience due to the filmmakers' unclear intentions and lack of resolve. If the undead aspects of the film had been removed, perhaps we would have seen a bit more substance and attachment. Instead, the dead girl plotting seems to condone the characters actions, with the only critical commentary in the film centering around whether a dead person has the right to self, dignity, and respect. Moving away from the questionable theme, there are also many moments of downright awkward scripting and dialogue between the main character and his love interest. Their exchanges are extremely out of place and unnatural, which weakens the effect of the film's finale. Add to that several moments where the actions of the antagonists become so far removed from reality and it immediately calls the rest of the film into question*. Most other elements of the production are handled very well, with strong visuals and set design alongside competent acting and filming. DEADGIRL is a mixed bag. There are elements that are very effective, but the plot and drive of the film both become so outlandish that it is hard to buy into the events entirely. Regardless of my stance on the film, I feel it is worth seeking out and experiencing for yourself so that you can develop your own stance on this modern Exploitation flick.
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*For those that have seen the film, this point is directed primarily at the scene at the gas station.