Estranged full movie review - Cheap and unsatisfying
ESTRANGED is a low budget British horror film that screams derivative at every step. The film's protagonist is a young woman named January who is crippled in an accident abroad, an accident which leaves her wheelchair bound and without a memory.
She returns to her ancestral home in the UK, but soon becomes convinced that her family members are out to get her. Is she going mad, or is there really a sinister plot at work?
It's not hard to guess the outcome of this film because the same subject matter has been done to death elsewhere. Although the plot is slightly different, ESTRANGED seems to me to be a huge copy of the excellent French thriller FRONTIERS, especially in the format, the climax, the look and actions of the main girl, etc. Except where FRONTIERS excelled, ESTRANGED simply bores.
It's one of those films that's saddled with a dullish protagonist who you don't even like, let alone care about. Actress Amy Manson can do nothing for her character. The rest of the cast don't get much of a look in, particularly poor James Cosmo, who is such a fine, gruff actor but who is sorely wasted here. I did like Craig Conway, cast against type as the butler, as he's always good fun. Sure, there are a few strong and/or edgy moments contained in this, but the whole greyed-out look makes it a depressing watch and CGI gore effects are always a disappointment for me too unless they're done very realistically, which they aren't here.