Other Side, The (DVD)
Directed by Gregg Bishop
Distributed by Allumination Film Works
Ambition. How much filmmakers want to do with a small budget can either make or break their projects. How many times have you seen something in an indie horror film that was a great idea but fell flat simply because the folks making the flick just couldn't afford to pull something off the right way? If you're a horror fan, your answer will no doubt be countless. Then sometimes lightning can strike. A director with a talented crew comes along and cuts corners in a way that's barely noticeable. Such is the case with director Gregg Bishop's uber-ambitious The Other Side.
We meet our hero, Sam (Mobley), on the night he is supposed to reunite with his long distance love affair, Hanna (Alexander). Things are looking pretty sweet. His girl loves him, they have got a cool place to live, and marriage doesn't seem so far down the road. Yep, everything is just peachy until he ends up dead and goes to Hell. Not content with eternal damnation and torment, old lover-boy and a few other souls manage to escape from the bowels of darkness and back into this world. At least now he can get with his chica and find happiness, right? Wrong. You see, escape from the pit is strictly prohibited and infractions of this rule lead to having weapon-toting Reapers relentlessly chasing you down as a means to drag you back to the abyss.
This results in all manner of low-budget mayhem. To be perfectly honest, The Other Side is not a great movie. But it's also far from a bad one. Sure, there's your fair share of completely uneven acting coupled with an at times less than stellar script, but this movie has energy! Through the smart and competent direction of Bishop, it manages to overcome most of its indie obstacles and turns out to be a fairly entertaining ride strewn with some truly disturbing imagery.
As far as bonus material, we get a competent little package but nothing drop-dead-holy-shit! First up there's a making-of featurette called Entering the Other Side that details the road to bringing this project to fruition. From there we get a short look at the film's visual effects, several deleted scenes with optional commentary by Bishop, and of course a way enthusiastic feature length commentary as well. Pretty standard stuff but, just like the movie, not bad either.
If you've got a couple of hours to kill and are looking for some off the beaten path horror to usher in October, look no further than The Other Side. Considering how badly the mainstream has let us down this year, we certainly don't have much to lose, and you may even be surprised how much you dig on it. I know I was. Keep your eye on Gregg Bishop!
3 out of 5
2 1/2 out of 5
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