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Scares flattened by 3D in ‘My Soul to Take’

Ankur Chawla | Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Wes Craven, the writer of classic horror movies like “Scream,” “A Nightmare on Elm Street” and “The Hills Have Eyes” once again proves his prowess in the genre with a fresh and original plot in “My Soul to Take.” The new film stands out from the regular slew of horror movies coming out in time for Halloween, such as “Saw 3-D” and “Paranormal Activity 2” (more like “Seen It Six Times Before” and “ParaBOREmal Activity”).

“My Soul to Take” revolves around seven children who were born on the day of a serial killer’s death. The serial killer was named Abel, a man who had dissociative identity disorder. While in the process of stabbing his wife, the police come to stop him and end up shooting him. Before his death, he vows to come back and complete his mission, inhabiting the soul of one of the seven kids.

Sixteen years later, the seven kids continue to practice a ritual in the woods to ward off the evil spirit of the “Ripper” when they, as expected, get split up and start dying. In this slasher flick, the audience is kept on the edge of their seats trying to piece together which of the seven is the killer. Additional wrinkles to the plot are sprinkled in as the teens discover that one of the kids is related to the original killer, and love triangles appear more frequently than they did in high school geometry.

Despite the interesting plotline, “My Soul to Take” was far from perfect. The movie had less of a reason for 3-D than animated movies like “Shrek” and “Despicable Me.” The extra dimension did not even impact the scariness of the movie, as one would expect from an overly bloody film. In fact, there was not a scene in the movie worth the added 3-D effects. As most moviegoers would agree, unnecessary 3-D is aggravating and needlessly expensive. The extra $3.50 for a pair of glasses theaters expect returned is more than a little absurd.

Additionally, there was not a recognizable face in this cast of fit-for-TV-sitcom teens, with the central character, Max Thieriot, being best known for his role in “The Pacifier.” As with most horror movies, the acting was far from great, but it was, at least, not so terrible as to be a distraction from the movie.

It is close to Halloween, and for those of you interested in a mildly thought-provoking, whodunit slasher flick, “My Soul to Take” is definitely worth watching. If you prefer surveillance videos of a kitchen with pots wobbling around or creepy clowns torturing people, by all means see one of the other horror movies in theaters.