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Hellborn (2003)

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Plot Summary:
"James Bishop is a young psychology resident, excited about his new job at St. Andrews Mental Hospital and the chance to help severely ill patients. The excitement changes to puzzlement, concern and finally terror as some of those patients mysteriously die and James' efforts to find the cause results in increasingly strange behavior from the St. Andrews staff. Things begin to clarify when James finally encounters the Harvester."

Review by
Phil Davies Brown
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Review Date: 24 July 2003 My Rating: out of 5


This independent film proudly states that it comes to us courtesy of the special effects creator of 'Jeepers Creepers'. Could this be because it has nothing else to offer?

The film starts routinely with presumably (judging by the white coat) a Doctor trying to escape what seems to be a hospital, proclaiming that he's 'not crazy'. We then see in graphic detail, that he in fact is not. After the very quick opening sequence, the main action begins with newly qualified Doctor James Bishop setting off to take up his residency at St. Andrews mental institute. James desperately wants to help his new patients, but it seems that Dr. McCort doesn't care about them and why is it that when they begin to talk to James they end up dead?

From the off-set, the film messes with our heads by introducing us to characters that may or may not be crazy and leaving it up to us to decide whether they are or not, which works in the films favour as it keeps the viewer intrigued.

In terms of casting, Bruce Payne as Dr. McCort and Tracy Scoggins as Nurse Helen both give performances of a high standard although the latter has less screen time. It was great to see Julia Lee who had a recurring role in both Buffy & Angel as Lauren, although she too has little to do in the film.

In the end the film does present an interesting twist on an idea that has been done before, but it has to be said the 'Harvester' effects are good enough to rival those present in 'Jeepers Creepers'.

A good little effort with a good cast and good special effects, makes Hellborn an entertaining way to spend minutes. Sadly Director Phil Jones who showed a lot of promise, passed away from cancer in March of this year before the film was released.

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