Check out my review of The Possession of Hannah Grace, my thoughts may shock you.
Synopsis: A shocking exorcism spirals out of control, claiming the life of a young woman. Months later, Megan Reed is working the graveyard shift in the morgue when she takes delivery of a disfigured cadaver. Locked alone inside the basement corridors, Megan begins to experience horrifying visions and starts to suspect that the body may be possessed by a ruthless demonic force. (Sony Pictures)
Starring: Shay Mitchell, Grey Damon, and Kirby Johnson
Writer: Brian Sieve
Director: Diederik Van Rooijen
Rating: 14A (Canada)/R (United States)
Running Time: 86mins
Suffice it to say that expectations aren’t very high for this one. This sentiment isn’t exactly unwarranted considering the track record of most studio horror films. With that being said, it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that The Possession of Hannah Grace is not good. Now why is it not good? The answer to that question shouldn’t come as much of a surprise either but for those wondering, this film is an eye-rollingly lazy, derivative, cliched, contrived, and flat-out stupid at times. At least it’s not overly long at least in theory. The film may have an advertised running time of just under 90 minutes, however, it felt much longer.
Though there technically was a story here, it didn’t matter all that much. With such a short running time, why even try? The story followed a former cop named Megan (Mitchell) who found herself working the graveyard shift at a morgue which is obviously a recipe for disaster. That very disaster took the form of a mysterious cadaver of a woman named Hannah Grace (Johnson). The title pretty much gives away Grace’s circumstances but actually has little to do with the film itself. The character also had backstories, however, they had no influence on the story either.
The plot in a nutshell follows the formula of most bad horror movies and was mostly a series of contrived and cliched situations set up by questionable character decisions so they can trigger the next suspense-free scare. This for the most part made the incredibly predictable and dull to watch (like the first paragraph didn’t give that away). Any film, horror or not, should make us care for the characters but unsurprisingly, that was not the case here. Despite being done countless times before, a more interesting story would be that of Grace herself rather than Megan.
Just about everything here was subpar, from the writing, directing, and even the special effects, but at least the acting was mediocre at best. Mitchell and her wooden delivery as Megan got the bulk of the screen time and was responsible for most of the film’s dullness. Damon as Megan’s ex-boyfriend and ex-partner Andrew served little purpose. Johnson as Grace was the better of the three for what was probably the wrong reason as it was easier to root for her (and the nondescript demon possessing her body) to finish the job.
Overall, this was a terrible horror film whose eye-rollingly lazy, derivative, cliched, contrived, and flat-out stupid story and mediocre performances made it’s relatively short running time feel a lot longer. While it may not be the worst film of the year, it’s not that far off and may still find an audience amongst “so bad that it’s good” fans, anyone else should avoid this disgrace at all costs.