Friday, October 25, 2013

My years in horror: 2001

Not often will I purchase a movie without having seen it first. The word of mouth regarding Brad Anderson's Session 9, however, propelled me to buy the DVD sight unseen. And now that film is 2001's best horror movie.

Session 9 follows a clean up crew working to clear asbestos out of Danvers State Hospital. Crew leader Gordon (Peter Mullan) needed the gig and so gave a low bid with a short completion window. This unfortunately put extra stress on the crew which includes Phil (David Caruso) and Hank (Josh Lucas). Hank and Phil are at odds because Hank ran off with Phil's girlfriend. Gordon has his own personal and family problems, which drove him to put in the ridiculously low bid on the project.

While cleaning, Mike (Stephen Gevedon) finds a box of old therapy sessions which begin to drive him bonkers. The rest of the crew gets in on the act and weird shit happens. Hank disappears, the stress builds and we end up with a pure psychological horror film. By that I mean everything is in the characters' heads. Whether the former mental institution is haunted or not, you can decide. But we never see a ghost. No spectral apparitions, just scary noises.


You might be one of those people who need to see a ghost or a monster to be scared. Session 9 is not for you. Session 9 is for people who can imagine the worst with only suggestions from the filmmakers. It's harder to pull off than you might think. That's why successful films like this are such a rarity. Session 9 will stay with you long after you watch it and make you question your own sanity or at least question what you believe to be reality.

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