New To Blu: Mary (2019) - Reviewed

Hitting blu-ray last week was the new horror flick, Mary. The film is the latest low budget haunted house flicks to see an evil female presence tear a family to shreds. Strangely though, we're now seeing the advent of Gary Oldman in straight to video releases. It's not so much a bad thing but not something we would have ever expected in a million years. Moving the standard idea of a home overrun with damned spirits to the setting of a sailing vessel is definitely welcome in an era where this sub-genre has been overdone to death. But, the final product is something we would have expected much more from. There's not a single ounce of originality in Mary

When a down on his luck dad stumbles upon the mysterious sailboat named Mary, he insists his family give up their routine lives and board the boat for a life changing adventure. Quickly, things spin out of control and the ship takes unruly vengeance on all those that board her creaking shell. All the story points are extremely familiar to the point of exhaustion. We've seen this movie time and time again. The only change being the claustrophobic setting of being out to sea on a yacht. There's nowhere to run, nowhere to hide, while evil lurks around every damp corner. 

What? I'm Dracula! I ain't 'fraid of no ghost!

We've come to expect a lot from Oldman. He's one of the greatest actors of our generation. He knows how to chew up scenes and spit them out with zero effort. Sadly, this flick fails to live up to his caliber of talent. And the routinely amazing Emily Mortimer is in the same predicament. She's given very little to work with in a script that just hits all the expected marks. While not all is bad here, it doesn't really live up to the outstanding cast that's been assembled. There are quite a few creepy jump scares and some cool visuals that add some balance, but overall this doesn't seem to live up to the mark. 

We're now experiencing another revival in indie horror. Mary may fill some vacant time if you're looking for a weekend watch. But, you'll probably feel like you've seen this one before. Oldman feels extremely restrained with this one and Mortimer (although doing her best with the material), isn't given much room to expand on her motherly character. If you've got an hour and a half to kill, you might find something to like about this one, but you won't love it. You've been out to sea on this boat before.

Director Michael Joi seems like he was just going through the motions with Mary, delivering base line horror for a fanbase that really wants new scares. 

-Chris George