Movie Details: View Here
2 Versions Of The Movie: Theatrical & Unrated Cut
Video: Widescreen 2.40:1 Color (Anamorphic)
Audio: English: Dolby Digital 5.1 [CC]
Spanish: Dolby Digital 5.1
French: Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
Run Time: 89 min
Synopsis from DVD Cover:
Enter a world of unrelenting evil as terror finds a new form in The Unborn. From the producers of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre and the co-writer of The Dark Knight comes this shocking supernatural thriller about a young woman (Odette Yustman) plagued by chilling dreams and tortured by a demonic ghost that haunts her waking hours. Her only hope to break the debilitating paranormal curse is in an exorcism with spiritual advisor Sendak (Gary Oldman). See what lies beyond the doorway of our world in this non-stop nightmare of the undead...
Who knew that there were Jewish exorcisms? I, for one, did not. That's probably the best thing about "The Unborn" - I learned some scary Jewish folklore. The worst thing about "The Unborn"? Well, now, that's hard to say. I mean, I could go with the sleep-inducing character of Casey/performance of Odette Yustman, the choppity-chopped editing, or the long list of plot holes that go far beyond the realm of acceptable implausibility, but I think I'll settle on the cardinal sin of horror-it was boring.
We start off with a jogging Casey (Yustman) running along when some disturbing masked dog takes her to a hidden treasure buried in the woods - if by "treasure" you're thinking "fetus in a jar." This is a dream, which leads to more unpleasant dreams and children smacking her and some potential eye tumors. When her dad finally lets her in on the fact that she killed her own twin brother in utero, this somehow gets her thinking more about her mother's suicide, which sends her to chat with an old lady named Sofi. Sofi starts off hostile, but eventually softens and tells Casey stories about a scary Jewish legend involving an evil spirit called a "dybbuk," prompting her to seek out a Rabbi and get with the exorcising.
So, I know I've said it before, but I'm a horror girl. And I'm not even really a picky horror girl - the classics are the classics, but I can appreciate a good selection out of Elvira's catalogue of scary schlock that used to come on KTLA at 3:00PM on weekends, too. Premise is important, but a lot of things have been done already - "The Unborn" did actually make a stab at originality by turning to the less traditional demons of Judaism. Performances and characters to care about are also a nice addition when you can get them, but, well, there's just none of that here (Yustman is the lead and I barely remember what she looked like a few hours after seeing it - then again, her own fictional dad only cared enough to show up for two or three scenes, so maybe I'm not alone in this). Not sure what talked Gary Oldman into this one - unless it was David Goyer-but he should be mad.
The one thing, though-the KEY ingredient to horror? Keep me interested and scare me at least once. "The Unborn" couldn't manage. Even though the story itself could've been good, it's edited together so poorly that it all comes off as a hodgepodge of loosely connected scenes all loping along to the inevitable exorcism. A movie doesn't have to drench the audience in blood or go into deep psychological riffs about madness to be frightening, but for god's sake, don't put all your best material in the trailer! It may get people to the theater once, as seems to be the goal with all these quickie horror flicks of recent memory, but it translates into bad word of mouth and bad DVD reviews.
If, by some fluke, you still think this film is worth a try, there's still no need to buy it. There are some Deleted Scenes, which add nothing and don't make this film a darn bit better. The DVD also includes an Unrated version (along with the theatrical release), and though I saw this in the theater, I see no difference in the Unrated cut (from what I've found online, there's about a minute's worth of new stuff, but I still can't find it).
The one thing I'll give "The Unborn" is that at least it's not a remake-I mean, it's not original, and it's got all sorts of "borrowed" ideas that lead up to an ending you can see coming from the moment Casey starts running down that path of bad dreams, but by god, it's not a remake. And that means a tiny bit of something.