Friday, 25 March 2016

THE INFLICTED ** U.S.A. 2012 Dir: Matthan Harris 83 mins

Writer / producer / director Matthan Harris also takes the lead role in this awkwardly titled feature : give the man credit for ensuring he has a sex scene with a buxom blonde in the first six minutes. Harris, who looks like Brendan Fraser’s weedier, creepier younger brother, is an oddball who effortlessly attracts young women despite the fact that everything he says suggests “PSYCHO RAPIST!”
He is on a mission to conceive a perfect child to replace the sibling murdered by his father (Bill Moseley) when he was a kid; former college friend Lindsay Hightower is the latest unlucky contender for the job. Harris’ self-conscious performance and flat direction torpedo THE INFLICTED, and the script takes unwelcome detours, even roping in a ridiculous prostitute-killing “copycat” killer to add some spice to the second half. It’s too laughable to be offensive (note the rape scene in which the guy keeps his boxers on), though the evolution of the female protagonist is insulting, at best. The saving grace of THE INFLICTED is a supporting cast full of horror veterans: Doug Bradley as an FBI agent, Sid Haig as a cuddly psychiatrist, Giovanni Lombardo Radice as a shouty Lieutenant and an underplaying Bill Moseley. All of them are eminently watchable.

Review by Steven West

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