I have a confession to make. If Danielle Harris is in a horror movie, I’ll watch it. Which was why I was initially interested in checking out Christopher Lawrence Chapman ’s feature film debut, Inoperable. I was doubly interested when I saw that Robert Kurtzman’s company Creature Corps was involved with the effects work. The plot is also intriguing, as Harris plays nursing student, Amy Barrett, who wakes up in a semi-abandoned hospital after being in a car wreck while trying to escape an approaching hurricane. But things are not right in this hospital, and she finds herself unable to escape a nightmarish time loop. Did I mention I’m also a sucker for these sorts of Groundhog’s Day looping narratives? Whether it’s Star Trek TNG, Farscape, Fringe, Buffy, Doctor Who, Supernatural, Preacher, or most recently, Star Trek Discovery, I love the way the characters can correct mistakes and ultimately figure out a way to break free from the loop. Usually, the cause of the loop is some sci-fi gibberish (but occasionally there’s some interesting theoretical physics tossed into the mix) and the result is some combination of learning a lesson and fixing the problem. Inoperable is a noble effort, hamstrung by weak dialogue and weaker acting. Which is too bad, because the hospital setting is very well-used, creating an increasingly more disorienting feeling, the editing is solid, and the practical gore effects, which range from needles and broken glass in feet, to sliced throats, to graphic open-skull brain surgery. Harris does her best with the material, but even her performance isn’t really a high point. I should point out, though, that Katie Keene as Jen does a lot of heavy emotional lifting and nails it about ninety percent of the time. And the ultimate plot twist, which I found incredibly unsatisfying, makes the cause of the time loop irrelevant while undermining the conceit of the film as Chapman aims for Twilight Zone but lands squarely in Wizard of Oz territory. The film’s climax is also marred by a ton of narrative confusion that is only partially set up by what’s come before. While the final moment of the film is cool – and more fun than the entirety of the film – it’s only barely supported by the script and completely misses the mark thematically. So, Inoperable is a film that looks great – especially the incredibly stylish opening and closing credit sequences, which I fucking loved – but ends up as sort of a bait-and-switch where neither the film as it is, nor as it could have been, effectively makes it to the screen. After a limited theatrical release in early December, Inoperable is available on DVD and VOD today, February 6, 2018. See larger image Inoperable With a hurricane approaching, a young woman wakes up in a seemingly evacuated hospital where malevolent forces have awakened. She realizes she must escape the hospital before the hurricane passes, or she will be trapped there forever. New From: $9.32 USD In Stock Share this:TweetShare on TumblrLike this:Like Loading... Related Leave a Reply Cancel ReplyYou must be logged in to post a comment.