Dreamkatcher – USA, 2020 – reviews and overview

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[Total: 3   Average: 2.3/5]

‘Let the nightmare begin’

Dreamkatcher is a 2020 American horror feature film about a boy who becomes possessed by an ancient spirit that commands him to kill his stepmother.

Directed by Kerry Harris from a screenplay written by Dan V. Shea, based on Harris’ storyline, the movie stars Henry Thomas, Radha Mitchell, Lin Shaye and Jules Willcox.

Plot:

Gail (Radha Mitchell) is forced to come to terms with Josh, her new stepson, at a remote country home. After stealing an evil talisman from a mysterious neighbour, Josh has sinister dreams of his dead mother—who commands Josh to murder Gail.

When Josh’s dad (Henry Thomas) returns, he and Gail suspect that their son has been possessed by an ancient, bloodthirsty spirit. Is it too late to save Josh’s life—or their own?

Release:

Dreamkatcher combines as many horror clichés as it can on a script that lacks a coherent development because of the many plot holes that plague it. The little things it does well, as with some acting and horrific visuals, are not enough to overpower the many flaws it has on its plot, as well as on its presentation.” The 10th Circle

“Derivative, tedious, sluggish, trite, and containing pretty much every ‘ghost story’ trope you’d think of, Dreamkatcher is a poorly- executed supernatural gimmick that miserably fails in both – [k]atching your attention due to an uninspired, dragged out and been-there-done-that plot-line, and releasing any sort of scares, as it entirely lacks such, with Mitchell’s solid acting being the only positive thing in this snoozefest…” CineMarvellous!

“The only snafu of the entire film is the lead-in to Shaye’s major moment on screen, which feels too rushed and too random without a proper build-up. Otherwise, this is an enjoyable ride that is easy to digest and will appeal to a wide array of both Horror and Thriller fans. Not too bloody and certainly not frightening, Dreamkatcher is creepiness that you can imbibe safely with the lights off.” Cryptic Rock

“Lin Shaye does another one of her patented “crazy old lady” bits. But this one stays reined in without the wide eyes and excessive shivers that have turned similar parts she has played into caricatures. Director Kerry Harris doesn’t pen any new chapters on how to craft a casual chiller, but Harris does fine work to keep the cast’s dials pointed at the same number.” Culture Crypt

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” …Dreamkatcher feels like a wasted opportunity: it had all the ingredients to be a good, creative and original indie horror film, but it decided to become a dull, uninspired and middle-of-the-road possession flick. Between bad performances, awful characters and formulaic story and scares, Dreamkatcher fails at delivering in most departments.” Horror World & Reviews

“A series of narrative missteps and tonal blunderings kneecap Dreamkatcher in the very spots that needed reinforcement. Capable performances, pitch-perfect scoring, and some laudable visual choices keep this film from the two for $10 at Target. It’s a bit rough, but it’s still a dream worth catching.” Killer Horror Critic

Dreamkatcher may have a predictable plot, but it makes up for it by introducing the science vs supernatural dilemma. Gail’s theory of Josh being a disturbed kid comes across as something believable considering the complexity and the ability of the human mind. While with enough theories across the world supporting the existence of the paranormal gives the audience a chance to look at the horror element as a possibility.” Meaww

“Dreamkatcher is like a greatest hits album of horror cliches, past and present, without the spark to make itself differentiated. We’ve got jump scares, spooky cabins, sing-song ghostly voices, creepy neighbors with dark pasts, and the characters constantly denying the supernatural when all the evidence in the world is staring them in the face, and a twist that’s not so much a detour as a rewrite of everything the film previously made clear… just so there can be some kind of liveliness.” SciFi Movie Page

Release:

Lionsgate released Dreamkatcher on DVD and VOD – rated ‘R’ – in the USA on April 28, 2020. Buy DVD from Amazon.com

Cast and characters:

  • Henry Thomas … Luke
  • Radha Mitchell … Gail
  • Lin Shaye … Ruth
  • Jules Willcox … Becky
  • Joseph Bishara … Night Hag
  • Finlay Wojtak-Hissong … Josh

Filming locations:

Bovina, New York

  

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