Cinematic Releases: Incarnate (2016) - Reviewed

The once thriving Blumhouse has become a pale shade of its once nearly great self. Reveling in the darkness of PG-13 horror has served them well in the past, but their last few entries have turned out to be deeply flawed genre flicks lacking any inspiration or creativity. Their newest film, Incarnate is a desperate measure for a company that brought us high yield scare factory movies like the original Sinister, Insidious, and Paranormal Activity. This latest demonic possession venture has all the markings of a movie hell bent on success but is ultimately marred by a massive degree of ineptitude on the exact same level as their poorly rendered Sinister sequel. The ideas are all there but the execution is truly horrendous. (no pun intended)

Centering on a man that can communicate through a dream state with those that are possessed, Incarnate borrows themes from Altered States, The Matrix, The Exorcist, and numerous other mind bending films from various genres. The premise is excellent. However, something is amiss with this Blumhouse creation. The entire thing wastes every opportunity by rewriting its own rules just to fill up ninety minutes with plot hole after inane plot hole.  With a bland use of stock orchestral music and a film quality that has the markings of a televised Fox pilot, this barely holds up as a movie. Considering my love affair with theatrical demons and their desire to do harm, Incarnate fails to live up to any type of cinematic standard. Audience members were huffing and puffing throughout. The frustration could be felt throughout the theater. The conclusion brought a loud sigh from the few people in attendance. For Blumhouse, this is potentially their worst feature following right behind the aforementioned Sinister continuation. 

I have no new movies listed on my IMDB page. This means something. 

Boasting that Aaron Eckhart is the lead player, one would think that there would be some meager level of entertainment value here. It's sad to type these words. But Eckhart does his absolute best to push past the mediocrity of the scripting and the untalented actors he's up against. He can definitely claim that he never treads lightly despite an abysmal screenplay. His performance is the best it could possibly be when handed a virtually unusable abortion from a writing department that's more impressed with the horror movies they can rip off than the ability to create something fresh or new. Incarnate is the perfect example of late fall/pre-holiday cinema garbage that Blumhouse had to unload for a tax writeoff. 

I've come to expect more from horror the past few years. It would be a great relief to see this production house find some new footing and move on to new territory more befitting the current state of indie horror. Incarnate is a giant leap backward for the studio and will tarnish their already dwindling reputation with their teetering fan base. Again, Eckhart at least makes this movie semi-watchable, but the predictable nature of the beast continues to rear its ugly head throughout a flick that definitely would have been better off as a television series. A talented man that can enter the subconscious minds of the possessed has weekly adventures battling demons, ghosts, and frightful beings. Incarnate should have been a 45 minute season one launch for an awesome new show. As a ninety minute movie, it basically flops on every level. 

Razzies here we come.