What’s up! I’m Marlon, and this is Ulven Reviews: movies and series from all over the world.
Today let’s talk about the 2021 Horror Mystery The Manor, starring Barbara Hershey and directed by Axelle Carolyn.
After having a mini-stroke, Judith (played by Barbara Hershey) moves to a nursing home because her piece of s__t daughter, Barbara (played by Katie Amanda Keane), doesn’t want to take responsibility.
Judith’s grandson Josh (played by Nicholas Alexander) remains supporting her, and he might be the only one from outside the nursing home able to help her when something bizarre starts to kill the residents of the place.
The Manor has an original plot. Usually, horror and thriller movies are set in mental hospitals, but this one is set in a nursing home. This location opens other possibilities for compelling narratives.
One of these narratives is the treatment of elderly people. A nursing home should be for people who need assistance with their everyday activities, not storage to forget our old people.
Our protagonist is sane, capable, and active. Her only need is medicine and someone around to help her in case of another health crisis.
However, she’s an inconvenience for her awful daughter, although there’s no explanation in the movie regarding this lack of empathy towards her own mother.
As Josh, the grandson, says at one moment, Judith took care of the daughter and the grandson, but when the time comes for the roles to be reversed, Barbara is not willing to do so.
Another problem for the protagonist that reflects a problem most elderly people suffer is their credibility. Like with mental health patients in movies and reality, people often don’t believe their claims until it’s too late.
Judith says someone is invading their room and f__king around, at first with her roommate, Annette (played by Nancy Linehan Charles), and then with herself, but the only thing she gets is being labeled as senile.
All of these things I’m mentioning are positive points for the movie. I think it’s great to see coming-of-age aspects in a horror movie because the theme is usually limited to dramas or dramedies. Examples: Grand Torino, which I love; and Harold & Maude, which I hate.
But then we have the end of the movie. It could have been great, and we would be talking of a film I would rate easily over 7, but that’s not the case at all. Stay serene because I won’t spoil it.
The ending destroyed practically everything I liked about the movie. The filmmaker accomplished it with one decision that diminishes the characters and narrative. Kevin Sorbo’s Hercules would say: DISAPPOINTED!
Most of the characters are adequate. Some are likable, like Judith, Josh, and the nurse Liesel (played by Ciera Payton). Others would be deplorable human beings in real life but serve their purpose for the plot, like Barbara.
The acting is excellent. I can’t praise Barbara Hershey enough, and I also liked Bruce Davison as Roland, he was funny. A good surprise was Nicholas Alexander, merely because I didn’t know him previously, although his face was familiar to me.
Another positive point, for the most part, was the appearance of the movie.
I love the manor used as a nursing home. The ancient look is absolutely amazing. Those colors and patterns of the wallpaper astonish me, gorgeous. Would I live in a place with wallpaper? No! but that’s another story about practicality.
The outside is also beautiful, both the manor’s exterior and the surroundings, with the forest and s__t.
I already mentioned the colors when talking about the wallpaper, but I want to emphasize it now all around. The lighting completes it, at least during the day. The night lighting is too bright to be believable.
Once again, I have to say how the score lacks character. It’s generic and without anything special.
I’m thinking about not even mentioning the score anymore unless I have something different than “it’s generic” to say.
I feel it’s rarer and rarer to hear compelling scores, I even watched a video about it one day. Sad… Just sad.
The Manor could have been an excellent movie. It has many outstanding qualities, like most of the plot and the visuals. Unfortunately, the ending ruined a lot for me. As I said before, it could have been over 7, but I’ll give The Manor 5 Moons!
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