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Grace (2009)
The trailer for Grace sent me into a frenzy. On the surface, the premise seemed right up my alley. A women who has lost everything willing her baby back to life only to reap disastrous consequences? Y
Published on October 26, 2009 | Filed under Review

The trailer for Grace sent me into a frenzy. On the surface, the premise seemed right up my alley. A women who has lost everything willing her baby back to life only to reap disastrous consequences? Yes please! I almost blind bought it. That’s how sure I was about this film. The tides have changed, my friends.

The first 20 (ish) minutes of Grace was exactly what I wanted. I adore Jordan Ladd and I wanted to make her character my bff. Seriously, a pregnant vegetarian seeking alternative birthing methods? I’ll take 2! Yes, I am that easy to win over. I found her character immediately likable and totally awesome. What the Hell happened?

I’ll tell you what happened! The story began to drag. The creepy breast milk subplot was totally unappealing. The inconsistent baby effects took me out of the film. Basically, I just stopped caring. And that makes me sad because I was sold after 10 minutes. I was crying as Ladd clutched her dead child and begged her to come back. Just thinking about it makes my stomach knot. I think my distaste for this film is so venomous because I felt genuinely let down. I allowed myself to get hooked; hell I wanted to get hooked! Then I was left flopping on deck of the boat only to be nudged back into the ocean from whence I came. Layman’s terms? I felt unfulfilled. I was ready to go on a journey. I wanted my heart to get ripped out and my mind to get blown. When it became obvious that neither of these things were going to occur, I would have settled for being entertained. In the end I wasn’t.

I haven’t seen the short this was based on but I have heard it worked better in that context. I can see that. I’m devastated that I didn’t enjoy this film.

Author:

Christine enjoys obsessing over Paracinema magazine. She also loves well written hour long TV dramas. Her free time is spent with her many boyfriends: Brian De Palma, Edgar Wright & Alfred Hitchcock.


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  • Emily

    Excellent review ma'am. I agree with a lot of your sentiments. The first half hour or so is heartbreaking, but the film doesn't really know where to go from there. I held on for awhile because I found the dead baby aspect pretty haunting and I enjoyed the performance of the mother-in-law from hell. My biggest problem was the last half hour, where the film turned into a dark house action chase.

    I'll definitely look out for Solet's next film. I think he has some great potential as a director and this is a fine start. It's just nowhere near as great as it set itself up to be.

  • T.L Bugg

    I must agree with Emily. I thought Grace showed lots of potential, but the execution wasn't really there. Unlike you Christine, I was turned off by how flaky the mom was, but I thought "hey, this could work in the context to be very interesting". Unfortunately, that's where the movie fell apart, it wasn't all that interesting.

    The short is very well done delivering the creepy stuff in a brief time. I think watching that shot before the film also hampered my enjoyment. I felt like i knew what the formula (pun intended) was going to be.

    That being said, great review. Even though I was not a big fan, I've been really interested to read everyone's opinions on it.

  • Doctor J

    I don't have the extra X chromosome it takes to really identify with the protagonist, but I really wanted to like this. I deal with births and pregnancy related issues professionally everyday. There is so much pressure and so many worries and things that can go wrong around that time of life that makes this an excellent concept for a truly horrific film.

    but first the film took me out with it's horrible portrayal of physicians and medical professionals and the garbage it spewed about them. Certainly this is a plot device used to keep her isolated with her baby and away from any professional help. But on a strictly personal level disparaging the career I have devoted my life to me made this movie difficult to like from the start.

    but what bothered me the most was it's lack of a clear direction or goal. I thought the director had 2 good choices of where to go with it. The one I favored was the post partum psychosis route where the baby was a still birth and Mom only believed it had lived in her head and was keeping it's dead body around and was motivated by a psychotic delusion that it needed her ala Psycho.

    The second route to make the baby a full on supernatural evil creature that needed blood like the plant in Little shop of Horrors would be my second choice. Not as cerebral as my first choice but could be entertaining horror.

    Where we went however was weak and directionless and unfulfilling.

  • christine

    I love hearing everyone's thoughts about this.
    I agree wholeheartedly with the "lack of clear direction" sentiment being bandied about.
    And I do look forward to seeing more of Solet's work.

  • Stephen Andrew

    The short is 5 minutes long and much gorier. I won't spoil anything for your readers, but I can't really support the sentiment that the short is more "effective" than the feature-length. As it was only shot as a promo reel by Solet to secure funding, it wasn't really treated as something that could stand on its own two feet (pun intended.) I did enjoy the Brian Austin Green cameo in the short and the extra blood. With that being said, I loved Grace and bought at Best Buy for $6.99, complete with the short film!

  • James

    I've been dying to see this since I first heard about it earlier this year. Haven't quite got around to it yet though. While I've enjoyed reading everyone's thoughts on it I think my expectations are still quite high. Hope I'm not setting myself up for a fall. Quite a lot of what I've read about Grace compares it to the early work of Cronenberg – a prospect that to me is something to not be missed. Let's wait and see… Cool review Christine – as always you cut straight to the heart of the matter.