The Entrance Damon Vignale

The Entrance Damon Vignale
Not exploratory enough to be a successful psychological thriller and not scary or gory enough to be considered horror, The Entrance acts as a tepid and forgettable glance at religious anxieties surrounding notions of evil. The crisp and professional direction masks a great deal of the budgetary limitations but slack-jawed secondary performances and a script that is unable to move beyond "neat premise” hold this film back from potential successes. Not long after her father (Bernard Cuffling) attempts to get her back into the family business fold, Detective Porhowski (Sarah-Jane Redmond) is approached by a twitchy drug dealer named Ryan (Michael Eklund) with a bizarre tale. He describes games of musical chairs and Bingo in an underground parking lot that result in the deaths of losing sinners with sordid pasts, which understandably throws an unconvinced Porhowski for a loop. After kidnapping her at gunpoint, Ryan is able manoeuvre Porhowski into the parkade to investigate these occurrences for herself. Meanwhile, a fellow officer (Colin Cunningham) uses his internet search engine wiles to learn of a fallen angel who likes to play games of good and evil. While an allegorical religious horror that touches on ascetic morality in relation to modernity could have been interesting, The Entrance settles for trite observations about good and bad, unwilling to touch on or explore any possible grey areas. The sinners displayed are child molesters, rapists and drug dealers, while "good” rests on the shoulders of an ex-rape victim turned police officer. Beyond fear and bewilderment, the sinners are given little psychological investigation or uniqueness of character, aside from their prior deplorable actions. This risk-free approach to storytelling ultimately fails a film that would have benefited greatly from having things shaken up a bit. Thoughtful performances from leads Redmond and Eklund simply cannot aggrandise what is essentially a timid and gore-free retread of Saw and Seven. The DVD includes a "making of” featurette that explores character construction with the actors, the 60-page script and the stunt work. (Mongrel Media)