Good evening, boars and ghouls, to episode 7 of the To Watch Pile After Dark, a Podcast counting down my top 50 favourite horror films.
Working out your top 50 favourite horror films is no easy task, and honestly, as I watch other new films, I find the list changing but I resisted changing the list. Maybe I’ll have to do an updated top 50 in the future? Anyway, Reflecting on why you like a film is very important, and seeing yourself as a fan of the film is also a key.
Today we look at number 45 on my top 50 Countdown, a film originally supposed to be a sequel to the 2003 Korean film Into The Mirror, by director Kim Sung-ho, but was reworked by New French Extremity writer/ Director Alexandre Aja into a remake starring Kiefer Sutherland and Amy Smart.
Come with me, as we take a look into 2008’s Mirrors…
After the mysterious death of security guard, Gary (Josh Cole), ex-cop Ben Carson (Sutherland) steps into his role of night watchman of a department store left abandoned after a fire. The place he acts as night watchman for was once called The Mayflower, and was the jewel of shopping, but it holds a dark secret in its basement.
Ben’s been suffering a fair bit in his life lately. After suffering a breakdown whilst working as a police officer, he became… well, not husband material… and in an entirely sympathetic act, his wife, Amy (Paula Patton) kicked him out to protect herself and their kids, Michael (Cameron Boyce) and Daisy (Arica Gluck). He has resigned himself to living with his supportive but concerned sister Angela (Amy Smart) whilst he tried to get himself back on his feet.
After working a few shifts at the Mayflower, Ben starts to notice strange things happening with the mirrors in the building and after some investigation discovers that the dark secret in the basement involves a possessed girl and a unique form of therapy involving a psychomanteum, which involves a patients tied to a chair surrounded by, you guessed it, mirrors.
As the investigation intensifies, Ben’s family becomes involved as the thing in the mirrors can travel through ANY mirrors, and the threat becomes VERY real…
The first thing I have to say about this film is it stars Kiefer Sutherland, and pretty much any horror film starring either him or his father are a good watch, due to both their acting skills and their intensity.
Another actor who stands our in this for me is Amy Smart. It’s probably not completely PC in this day and age, but I don’t just love this actor for her skill, she’s also gorgeous. I’ve been following her career for years and loved her in everything from Road Trip, to the Crank films to The Butterfly Effect. She’s a definite standout for me and I look forward to seeing her in the Tv series Stargirl.
The key to how great this film is though is definitely Alexandre Aja. His skill as a filmmaker and screenwriter was made apparent by the first film I saw of his called Haute Tension, aka High Tension, which admittedly has a twist that isn’t quite 100% fair on the viewer. He has since moved to America and made some amazing films, including remakes of Piranha and The Hills Have Eyes, and of course, this film. His strength comes from being able to get impressive performances from his cast, and not being shy about making horror films… oh yes, there will be blood.
There is a sequel to this film called, unsurprisingly, Mirrors 2, directed by Victor Garcia, who almost single handedly destroyed the Hellraiser franchise with the dreadful Hellraiser Revelations. Thankfully his sequel to this film is no where near as bad as that and stars Sin City’s Nick Stahl, Saw II’s Emmanuelle Vaugier, The Real American Heroe’s William Katt and Kim Possible’s Christy Carlson Romano. Thankfully it’s not as bad as the Hellraiser sequel.
On a sad note, Cameron Boyce passed away in July of this year, 2019, of an epileptic seizure at the young age of 20.
So that’s it, my 45th favourite horror film of all time. I wonder if you could ‘see yourself’ looking into it and enjoying it as much as I did.
Thanks you for listening to this episode of the To Watch Pile After Dark. Don’t forget you can see the transcript of this episode, and my movie reviews at my blog www.towatchpile.com. Also, forget to like and subscribe. The To Watch Pile After Dark will have a new episode pop up at midnight on the 13th of every month and on other occasions when I have time to record, and is available wherever good podcasts can be heard.
See you next time, and remember, a real collector NEVER catches up…