Dead Mary

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From the cover art and title, it’s quite easy to see why so many viewers have been upset by this movie. The cover for “Dead Mary” features a girl standing in front of a mirror in which a demon’s face is screaming. Well, there’s no actual “Dead Mary” in this film, nor does she ever appear in a mirror; but if you go into this movie with no expectations like I did, you may find yourself pleasantly surprised.

A group of old college friends meet up at a cabin for a relaxing weekend away from their jobs and other responsibilities. The gang doesn’t see each other quite often anymore, so they intend to utilize this weekend to its full potential. Unfortunately, after they all arrive, they find out one couple is breaking up, one guy is cheating on his wife, Ted (the owner of the cabin) hasn’t shown up yet, and other problems that put a damper on the mood. The rest of the day is extremely uncomfortable for everyone, so after they have a few drinks and lounge around chit-chatting. When the subject of “Dead Mary” comes up, everyone becomes interested. It’s essentially the same story as Bloody Mary, except the girls claim that Dead Mary is a witch and that she’s real. So one by one, a few of the friends venture off into the bathroom and say her name in front of a mirror three times and emerge unharmed. No harm, no foul…or so they think. Only a few hours later, one friend runs inside covered in blood and screaming that another’s dead. They go into the woods and sure enough find the mauled body, which suddenly sits up and starts regenerating itself while spitting out cruel rumors about each person. Then they suddenly realize, “Where are all the other campers?” “Where is Ted?” “Why wasn’t there anyone at the gas station earlier?” Soon it becomes apparent that there is something else going on in the area and it pits the group into a dangerous game of “who can you trust and who will be next?”

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My plot description’s kind of lame and vague, but it’s kind of a hard movie to explain. I don’t feel like naming and describing all of the characters, because really, their roles aren’t that important. They’re not stereotypical like in most horror movies, but come off as genuine, real people who are put in a terrible situation. The acting is 100% legit and I guarantee that you will never get better acting in a direct-to-DVD b-film. The dialogue flows WAY too well; sort of on the lines of Kevin Smith’s natural dialogue, except this film thankfully doesn’t sound like a bunch of pretentious 30-year-olds battling wits on pop-culture phenomena.

As I said earlier, there really ISN’T a “Dead Mary,” but there somewhat is I suppose. You can argue that the game of “Dead Mary” brought about the witch’s spirit which starts possessing the friends one by one, but then that negates the fact as to why there’s nobody else around for miles and miles. The plot may sounds like it has holes, but I’d like to believe that the script just leaves a lot up to personal interpretation. (I’m such an optimist.) But we never see a “Dead Mary” with the exception of possessed friends and we’re never really told why this is going on. The movie also ends on a VERY quick note, which you’ll either love or hate.

There isn’t a drastic amount of gore in the movie, but the film itself doesn’t really call for it. It’s a lot more of a character-study/survival film than a straight up gore film. Regardless, it still has this “Evil Dead” meets “Cabin Fever” vibe and the creepy vibe alone makes up for the lack of (or off-screen) violence.

With superb acting, gorgeous camera work and quality, and a strange but thought provoking plot, “Dead Mary” puts a very interesting staple in the genre. It also proves that direct-to-DVD isn’t such a bad thing, considering that this movie was better than most of the mainstream fare I’ve seen this year. And plus it stars Dominique Swain, who I am absolutely in love with. If only she’d possess me…

The Hidden Message: Dead Mary. Dead Mary. Dead M—–aahfhfsd.fj…

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~ by exploitnation on March 12, 2008.

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