DMovies - Your platform for thought-provoking cinema
Director - Dennis Bartok - 2017

"Greasy movie"
Nail-biting Irish horror about a ghost haunting a woman recovering from an accident in a hospital will make you want to jump from your seat... but what if your body refuses to budge? In cinemas this week

What if you wanted to scream but a machine prevented you from doing so? Dana (Shauna Macdonald) is paralysed on a hospital bed connected to a respirator, following a very tragic hit-and-run car accident. She can only communicate through a computer-synthesised voice (more or less à la Stephen Hawking, minus the metallic tones) generated by words she types on a keyboard. There’s a ghost haunting Dana, but no one believes it. Her doctors and family instead think that she is going insane. She is voiceless, both in the literal and the connotative sense of the word.

The first feature by the Irish filmmaker Dennis Bartok has all the ingredients of a good and conventional  horror movie: a vulnerable victim who no one takes seriously, a sense of entrapment (on a bed in this case), empty corridors, plenty of blood and so on. The story development is also quite conventional: those who doubted Dana will inevitably pay a very high price.

The outcome is very effective: the suspenseful pace holds the film together throughout, and the jump scares and gruesome images progressively build up to great results. The director deftly makes use of various media (CCTV, computer cameras, etc), also a very common horror device nowadays. Some images from the film will likely materialise in front of you once you close your eyes, which is more or less what a horror movie is intended to do.

But Nails isn’t a perfect movie. The first problem is that the climax at the end of the movie has too many loose ends, and many of the narrative threads (such as infanticide and a visit to the hospital during Dana’s childhood) never weave together even into a vaguely coherent plot. And while Shauna Macdonald is very good, some of supporting actors are a bit iffy: sometimes it feels like they are a little late delivering their lines.

Nails is out in cinemas across the UK and Ireland on Friday, June 16th.

Click here for our review of A Dark Song (Liam Gavin), another Irish horror out this year and worth watching out for.



"Greasy movie"

By Victor Fraga - 14-06-2017

By Victor Fraga - 14-06-2017

Victor Fraga is a Brazilian born and London-based writer with more than 15 years of involvement in the cinema industry and beyond.

He has vast experience as a film journalist. He was previo...

DMovies Poll

Do/would you go to the cinema in order to watch documentaries?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

Most Read

François Ozon probably doesn’t get much sleep. At [Read More...]
Pigs might fly. And so Brexit might happen. [Read More...]
Time flies by! DMovies was launched in February [Read More...]
American novelist Dennis Cooper’s cinematic debut feels like [Read More...]
It’s 2018, and neoliberalism is steadily morphing into [Read More...]
On the occasion of the UK release of [Read More...]

Read More

The Future of Work and Death

Sean Blacknell, Wayne Walsh
2017

Victor Fraga - 17-08-2017

Is technology ready to challenge the two biggest inevitabilities of life: working and dying? And more crucially, are we prepared for such changes? Outstanding doc raises urgent economic, sociological and philosophical questions - watch now on VoD [Read More...]

Le Trou

Jacques Becker
1960

Alasdair Bayman - 17-08-2017

Is Jacques Becker's masterpiece indeed "the greatest French film of all times"? Our dirty writer Alasdair Bayman takes a fresh look at the highly subversive and innovative flick, and reflects on topics of honour and incarceration - now on DVD, BD and EST [Read More...]

Quest

Jonathan Olshefski
2017

Victor Fraga - 15-08-2017

Hope, not fear: doc follows family in Philadelphia during the Obama years, and reveals that being Black in the US means facing an uphill struggle everyday while juggling not to lose the tenderness - in selected cinemas and VoD [Read More...]

Facebook Comment

Website Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *