We’ve always been a fan of Christina Ricci with her break out performance as Wednesday Adams in the Addams Family movies. Since then though she‘s made some recent movies none of which have really bought her the attention she deserves. So will her latest film Distorted do it?
Here she plays Lauren Curran who suffers from traumatic dreams after a recent tragedy in her life for which she has regular counselling. Married to Russell (Brendan Fletcher) they decide to move into what appears to be a dream apartment in a modern block of flats. Now we’re no fans of estate agents and frankly who is but when they’re greeted by a super smooth realtor oozing odious charm you know something’s up. So moving in things quickly start getting suspect and at just over 80 minutes this wastes no time in starting with corridors that owe much to The Shining, flickering lights, subliminal messages popping up on the TV and rather odd neighbours. Frankly it’s like staying at a French B&B but you name it you’ll have seen it before and it inevitably crops up here.
Suspicious Lauren does her own research on Google (what did movies do before Google existed?) and ends up in contact with Vernon Sarsfield (John Cusack) some sort of conspiracy theorist who lives off grid and frankly if you came across him you’d be enquiring with the local mental health ward as whether they were missing a patient. It’s him that convinces her that she’s not away with the fairies as he appears to be. The answer to her problems is all quite obvious: Move Out! But hey,what do we know?
The problem with these type of conspiracy movies is that the central character is always disbelieved, written off by others as a loon and it doesn’t help that as she’s undergoing trauma therapy for another matter that everyone else writes it off as a by-product of her treatment. There’s heightened mood music that blares out at every opportunity in an attempt to make every moment an unnerving one. Distorted is an epileptics nightmare as there are increasingly frequent flash frame montages of unsettling images with one moment playing like a poor homage to A Clockwork Orange as Ricci is strapped into a seat facing a TV relentlessly playing the montage on a loop.
So will Distorted do anything for Ricci? In short, No. It’ll help pay bills but the days of Sleepy Hollow, Casper and Addams Family are a distant memory and she’s does her career no favours here. Here, without here trademark black bob haircut she looks like Anna Faris twin sister, another actress who is in need of a hit so perhaps any producer reading this will pair them up in something decent. It’s the same for John Cusack whose choice of films has always been eclectic taking in Con Air to Hot Tub Time Machine but this is another string of films of late that he’s appeared in that have gone understandably straight to VoD
Formulaic and flatly lit this is very much a TV movie of the week.
Here’s the trailer for Distorted……
DISTORTED IS RELEASED ON VoD on 4th FEBRUARY 2019