Review of "The Possession of Hannah Grace”
by The Headless Critic
The Possession of Hannah Grace – 2018
Production by: Broken Road Pictures
Distribution: Screen Gems
“The most frightening thing about an exorcism is what happens next.”
What happens when an exorcism fails? In case of The Possession of Hannah Grace (Kirby Johnson) it means her death. That leaves to question where does the demon go when the human it inhabits ceases to live? In The Possession of Hannah Grace it still inhabits her body deep in the cold chambers of the Boston’s General Hospital. “Death is only the beginning.”
A fallen rookie police officer Megan Reed (Shay Mitchell) just took the job as night watch for the morgue at the Boston hospital. Traumatized by events that led to the loss of her partner, the former cop no longer trusts what she sees. When strange things start happening while alone in the cold hospital basement for her night’s watch, she isn’t sure it’s real. Then the people around her begin to die…
Opening with a possession this isn’t the exorcism movie you expect. This Brian Sieve story takes the opposite approach to most exorcism films that try to rid the body of the possession as this exorcism tries to rid the demon of a body to possess. Contortionist Kirby Johnson manages some truly creepy positions. If CGI was used to enhance anything but her mouth in the finally, I couldn’t tell it. CGI fire still remains something that never looks right in film and shouldn’t be used but at least in this possession it’s used sparsely.
The character Hannah Grace is inherently flawed in her death. If the possessed in this film can go so far as to levitate a human, sending them flying across the room to their death then why can it not simply untie itself from the bed? Lots of little things like that don’t add up. There’s not much realism in characters or plot. It seems like in traditional horror movie form all the characters die but a couple.
When comedy relief character Dave (Max McNamara) goes missing, every bump in the night is blamed on him as the other characters comically call out “Dave” before they meet their own demise. It’s off-putting comedy in the middle of a horror film.
This darkly filmed feature looks eerie. The morgue itself is almost from a comic book. It looks like a re-purposed government missile silo. It did make me curious if the dead in Boston find their way to such a place so I guess it’s still convincing. The movements of Hannah Grace are creepy. The character is over-exposed taking away from some potential frights. I was pleased they kept her nudity subtle to the point it’s almost non-existent even though she’s a body in the morgue for the majority of the film. Louis Herthum gives the films best performance as Hannah’s father. Most of the other characters weren’t very fleshed out with many just providing a body count. If you can overlook the lack of tight filmmaking, it’s an enjoyable movie not without its flaws. I’m probably harsher in my criticism because of its wide theatrical release.
Available Now in Theaters
3 out of 5 Headless Critics