Monday, October 3, 2011

Coffin Rock (2009)

Cheating can always get you in trouble. Just ask the movie world. The likes of "Fatal Attraction" have shown a guy cheating with another woman, only to end up in trouble...mostly because the bitch is psycho. Well, "Coffin Rock" tries it's hands at this genre, but reverses the roles.

Rob (Robert Taylor) and Jessie Willis (Lisa Chappell) are a married couple living in a small fishing town, and they're having marital problems because even though they've been trying for 15 months, Rob can't seem to produce a child. One night, a drunken Jessie runs into Evan, (Sam Parsonson), and they end up having sex. Now Jessie is pregnant, and there's no way Rob is the father. To make things worse, Evan is a psychopath whose prone to stalking and violence.

To the films credit, "Coffin Rock" (that title sounds more fitting for a heavy metal based horror movie from the 80's) does feature some fine direction and cinematography, as first time director Rupert Glasson shows some promise, and cinematographer David Foreman has a great eye for location. Also, the performances are all strong, especially Parsonson as Evan. This is a character who can and will snap at a moment's notice, and the actor makes many of his outbursts chilling and realistic. Oh, and I gotta give the actor credit for putting a live fist in his mouth. That takes real commitment.

Unfortunately, there isn't much in "Coffin Rock" that separates it from other "jilted lover" movies, as this is pretty much "Fatal Attraction" with a crazy guy and not much excitement. Sure, Evan is a scary guy, but we know he's crazy from the get go. There's little ambiguity to the character, and the movie doesn't give us any doubts about his sanity, which slightly lessens the impact. Also, Rob and Jessie don't behave in the most logical way, as Jessie has opportunity after opportunity to tell Rob the truth, as it would at least lead to the police taking Evan in, but she doesn't, which lessens some sympathy for her. Rob meanwhile, is apparently dumb as a rock, as he never seems to suspect anything about Evan until later on, even though the psycho keeps showing up and Jessie acts differently when he's around. Then there's the conclusion, which doesn't have the emotional impact it so clearly wants to have.

"Coffin Rock" isn't a necessarily a bad movie, it's just one you've seen before, with little in the way of it offering anything new. It's probably worth a Netflix stream, but not much else.

Rating: 5/10

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