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Suspended Animation
Suspended Animation
Actors: Alex McArthur, Laura Esterman, Sage Allen, Rebecca Harrell, Fred Meyers (III)
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama, Mystery & Suspense, Animation
UR     2004     1hr 54min

Animator Thomas Kempton gets more than he bargains for when a snowmobile trip turns to terror in the wilds of Northern Michican. After narrowly escaping the clutches of two psychopathic sisters who want to have him for di...  more »

     
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Movie Details

Actors: Alex McArthur, Laura Esterman, Sage Allen, Rebecca Harrell, Fred Meyers (III)
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama, Mystery & Suspense, Animation
Sub-Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama, Mystery & Suspense, Animation
Studio: First Run Features
Format: DVD - Color,Full Screen
DVD Release Date: 03/23/2004
Original Release Date: 12/25/2001
Theatrical Release Date: 12/25/2001
Release Year: 2004
Run Time: 1hr 54min
Screens: Color,Full Screen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 2
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

Very disturbing and interesting at the same time
Kerigman | Omaha, NE United States | 08/14/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This movie felt like "The greatest made-for-TV-movie EVER created". It has a few scenes that give it an R rating, but the overall quality of the movie seems like it was made for TV.

Quality aside, this was a GREAT movie. It has such an expansive storyline, that I'd almost call it a horror soap-opera. But don't let that turn you away from it, It was the most refreshing unknown movie I've seen in a very long time.

Also, don't let the premise of the movie fool you, it starts out feeling like a complete rip-off of Misery, with a cartoonist instead of a novelist meeting a crazed lady, but it goes worlds beyond that. The whole time I watched it, I kept wondering what new twist to the plot they would do next, and every time they took a new turn, it just kept making the movie better. It almost felt like 4 good storylines (or 3 sequels if you will) intertwined into one movie. Superb and creepy!"
Pretty Good
Schtinky | 03/29/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)

"This is an interesting film from the director of "Let's Scare Jessica to Death." The concept is unique, the acting is good. Not really a horror film, per se. Worth your while if you happen to be considering it."
We're gonna get the good out of you
Schtinky | California | 07/03/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"If you love 'B' horror flicks, and liked Stephen King's 'Misery', you will love 'Suspended Animation'. From pickled body parts to creepy characters, this is one film that surprised and entertained my seething need for good horror.

Thomas Kempton (Alex McArthur) is an Animator working on his latest animation project. He's stuck in his attempts to animate his latest female lead, to find the right sketch, the right "look" for her. Sometimes being stuck means taking a break, so Tom and his buddies take off for a fun weekend of snowmobiling. (There are some good scenes here)

Tom gets separated and, naturally, wrecks his snowmobile. He seeks help at a nearby cabin, and is greeted warmly (if not a little creepily) by Ann Boulette (Sage Allen). Ann is a large, homely woman who calls her brother to help him get his snowmobile unstuck. While serving refreshments, Ann's sister Vanessa (Laura Esterman) rises from her slumber on the couch and gives Tom a very strange peek at her questionable ballet skills. Tom decides its time to leave, but its too late. Ann drugged his refreshments, and when Tom wakes up he is duct taped to a wheelchair and destined to become dinner for the two sisters.

After stamping his forehead with a USDA stamp and showing him many of their pickled delights from the pantry, Tom figures out their intentions. He then attempts to pit the women against each other, telling them he wants to draw them and use them in his next animation series, hoping to bide time. His ploy works for a while, until the women find he is tricking them and decide to chop him up.

In the nick of time, Tom's friends arrive. Ann is eliminated, and after a very good snowmobile chase, so is Vanessa.

But wait, the movie isn't over. It's just beginning! Like many victims, Tom becomes obsessed with his ordeal, and convinced that the evil Ann and Vanessa belong in his animation script. He finds their brother Phillip (J.E. Freeman) in prison and visits him, trying to get a feel for Ann and Vanessa. (Interesting note: I thought Phillip looked way too much like Seinfeld's 'Uncle Leo', which gave me a chuckle or two)

Phillip leads Tom to Vanessa's daughter Clara Hansen (Maria Cina) and her son Sandor (Fred Meyers). It seems that Sandor was born to carry on the family tradition. ("I'm not supposed to eat this ... I'm lactose intolerant" -- The pimple popping scene is one of the grossest things I've ever seen. Forget evisceration and dismemberments, this scene is enough to make beer vomit appear a gourmet aperitif)

Tom involved Clara and Sandor in his life, using Clara as a model for his animation. Sandor's disposition worsens, but Tom simply cannot let go of his obsession with the Boulette sisters no mater what sinister things begin to happen. And yes, there's a lovely twist at the ending.

The performances were excellent in this film, particularly from Laura Esterman. From her sexy voice, bizarro ballet, and unpredictably psychotic behavior, she plays the role of Vanessa perfectly. My hat goes off to Sage Allen for her lovely neurosis, and Fred Meyers for his evil handling of his role.

What makes this film really stand out is the depth of the horror. It is horror like it should be, some things predictable and some things not, that is what keeps the blood flowing, that question of what is to come. The photography is decent (in some scenes quite good) though the FX is slightly cheesy. 'Suspended Animation' captured that 'Twilight Zone' feeling we sometimes get when meeting people, and reminds us to be careful whom we ask for help.

My only complaint is that there are no subtitles available, either for the hearing impaired or other languages. However, don't let that stop you from grabbing up this low budget horror treat. Enjoy!
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