Lucky McKee ("May", "Red", "The Woman"), an arguably underappreciated filmmaker, is tearing a family apart in his newest feature "Kindred Spirits". It's not as impressive or dig-deep as "May" or "The Woman", but threads along nicely, offering a neat albeit familiar feeling story. I gotta say one thing though - I don't feel like the movie's poster is very beneficial, the surprisingly cheap looking result doesn't sell it at all. Sadie (Caitlin Stasey) resurfaces to visit her childhood home after years of absence, to be together with her sister Chloe (Thora Birch) who's a single mother, and her daughter Nicole (Sasha Frolova) whose life Sadie saved 10 years before. Soon enough we discover that Sadie's past and traumas has affected her badly & she starts manipulating her family and everybody around them to achieve her ill minded goal. The story flows evenly, takes frequent turns, makes you feel some effort behind it and the surrounding atmosphere. The problem, however, is that despite the fact that all of the elements work at least on a decent level, the very same elements also feel familiar, rehashed and rather uninspiring. Messed up child/mother/sister/daughter/lover dynamics, dysfunctional family themes, dangers of obsession, little bit of that Hitchcockian feel, but not much originality. The most underwhelming part is the ending, the filmmakers optioned for the one I easily predicted during the first half an hour, the one that probably most did. A little awkward, the ending was. Nevertheless, "Kindred Spirits" also offer up decent performances by all the lead ladies & certain indie scene fans will appreciate seeing Macon Blair. Visually the considerably low budget can be seen clearly and often, in cinematography, editing and in the lack of action or creative camera work, but McKee still successfully manages to make it all worthwhile. The original score was decent, I can't say that about all horror movies on the same budget level. "Kindred Spirits" most definitely isn't a bad movie, but it also feels underplayed, as if the potential has not been fully realised. That, plus the familiar story & characters along with the low budget makes up an average suburban thriller that's less than a sum of its good parts. Recommended to the fans of the cast & Lucky McKee. My rating: 5/10.
A successful single mother's carefree sister reappears out of the blue one day to stay with her and her teenage daughter.
February 19, 2020