In New England, police harass a hitchhiker, only to be thrown through the air by an unseen opponent. Taken into custody, the man becomes of particular interest to the sympathetic Dr. Slovak.
From Joe Begos the director of Almost Human comes the sequel to Scanners he always wanted to see. Well a sequel in heart only not in story.
Zack (a superb Graham Skipper) is one of a group of evolved humans that have telekinetic powers who are trying to stay out of the clutches of the evil Dr Michael Slovak (a suitably hammy John Speredakos). Only this doesn’t work too well for him and following a random stop by local cops he finds himself at the doctor’s institute as part of some form of experimentation programme. Only they don’t know what the experiment is.
The story is fairly simple whereby he escapes, taking his telekinetic girlfriend with him and a chase ensues. But that is what works for this film so well. It’s full of lovely splatter gore including exploding heads (which any scanner fan will attest that for this sort of film it’s a must) 80’s lighting and and very video feel. Added to the simplistic story line and you’re left with a horror film straight out of one of horror’s most beloved times.
Joe Begos has crafted a film directly out of his childhood (and, joyously, mine) which looks fantasic. The cinematography, by Begos himself, is a sumptuous mix of reds and blues and the look adds to the film perfectly giving it a distinct sense of character.
The Mind’s Eye knows exactly what sort of film it is and shouldn’t be dissected too much as there’s no hidden meaning, no subscript and no pretention. It’s about people with powers than can explode your head! And I loved it all the more for that. Having loved both his features so far (and his quirky werewolf short which is where I first took notice of him as a directorial talent to watch out for) I anxiously await his next project.
If you love 80’s style horror that was laced with fun, gore and sheer entertainment then this is for you. If you don’t then you should check this out anyway as it may make you change your mind.
Joe Begos follows up Almost Human with The Mind’s Eye, a dense, ultra-violent Scanners homage that rewards those who stick with its slow-burning first half with an explosive final act. Our first encounter with protagonist Zack (Graham Skipper) finds him wandering along a deserted road in the snow. He’s stopped and harassed by police, an altercation he quickly ends by throwing them into the air, seemingly with his mind. Short of a place to go, he finds himself the subject of the attentions of Dr Slovak (John Speredakos), alongside a handful of others who share his gift. However, it soon becomes apparent that Slovak’s intentions are more sinister than they initially appear, and Zack and fellow test subject Rachel (Lauren Ashley Carter) are soon locked in an escalating fight for survival.
While The Mind’s Eye sets its scene pretty quickly, it’s mostly down to strong performances from the supporting cast that its momentum maintains for the duration. Larry Fessenden and Noah Segan both put in strong showings (Fessenden is, as ever, particularly engaging) that carry the film through its hunt-and-chase second act. While some of the telekinesis-heavy showdowns towards the end bring a couple of unintentional laughs, the last half hour or so is really a sight to behold, with some spectacularly inventive kills and some surprising emotional weight bringing things up a notch. It’s far from perfect, but The Mind’s Eye sees Begos continue to embrace eccentricity with explosive results.
If you are looking for a truly punk rock don’t give a f**k movie then you really will not go wrong with THE MINDS EYE. This truly is an explosive skull splitting blast right from the get go and you can tell Joe Begos made this movie with a lot of heart and a brilliant back collection of eighties movies.
THE MINDS EYE dips into the psychokinesis sub genre of the horror market but plays out more like a comic book movie: cue the bad guy capturing those with the powers and draining them for his own use. This then becomes a battle for survival as they escape the medical facility they were tricked into and becomes an all out gore fest of good vs evil.
This movie once it starts just accelerates faster and louder and the death scenes are exceptionally done. Couple this with an amazing soundtrack and you truly have a winning combination.
Do not miss this.
The Minds Eye is currently on the festival circuit