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All I Need - A Sinister Call for Blood
by Erik Sean McGiven on Jun 03, 2015
All I Need" is a frustrating film to watch, mainly
because the intriguing premise is not fully developed. It could be so much better. When Chloe (Caitlin Stasey -
"Neighbours") wakes up in hotel room bound and gagged, she wonders
how she got into this predicament. Then she sees there are other young girls
likewise bound and gagged clad in only their underwear. This has our attention, as these girls appear
to be either unconscious or dead. What's
going on here?
The story shifts to Andrew (Markus Taylor -
"Deadheads") an out of work dad trying to visit his daughter. Behind
on his child support he's looking for quick money. When he receives a phone call to deliver
packages to random addresses, he takes the job.
These two story lines take forever to connect and the
resolution is a disappointment. While I
was intrigue by the initial setup my interest wane after a series of drawn out
escape attempts, all very similar. When
Chloe becomes innovative, the story takes off.
Now there is hope. Likewise, the
question of why these young women were held captive became less pressing as
there were no clues showing possible reasons.
For instance, if a body had been returned to the room drained of color,
one might surmise an explanation.
The lack of dialogue presents a problem as so many questions
are left unanswered. Why are these women
being held captive, why are some gagged and bound, why are others unconscience
or dead? What happens to those taken
from the room? What happened to those whose bodies are returned? Too many
questions dilute the menace. Therefore, some dialogue in this area between two
girls might have helped, especially if their misconceptions up the terror
level. Fear is the expectation of pain and terror causes extreme exhaustion and
confusion of one's faculties.
The fact that the girls Chloe attempts to help end up worst
off is a nice touch. You would think she
would learn to leave well enough alone, yet she's a responsible person with
genuine caring qualities and that makes her more likeable. She becomes more admirable toward the end
when she becomes more innovative. Using
torn bed sheets is an ingenious device utilized in the reversal scene that
resolves this excruciating dilemma. When she extracts her revenge, she savors
the moment with the perfect expression, one fully appreciated by the audience.
Elizabeth, (Holly Twyford -"Pecker") the
ultra-rich benefactor behind this mayhem reveals to Andrew her "need"
plus how he will be richly rewarded if he works for her. This sinister scene, near the end of the
movie, explains all. Moreover, the connection between Chloe and Andrew's
stories become known. I expected more.
The desired response in terror is to scare the audience
though exploitation of basic fears resulting from alignment with sympathetic
character(s) in terrifying struggles, to manipulate a vicarious expectation of
tension and pain. There are moments in
"All I Need" that fulfill this response; however, they are not
compelling enough and too redundant to make this a viable fright movie. The acting by Caitlin Stasey is commendable
as she plays all the right notes for this genre. Her pacing is deliberate and stretched to
promote the anticipation of fright and pain.
She also has a very expressive face that clearly articulates her
thoughts and feelings and she uses the full palette of fearful expressions. With limited dialogue, she carries this film
with her behavior alone. Having better
material, she will go much farther.
CREDITS: "All I
Need" stars Caitlin Stasey, Rachel Melven, Jonathan Erickson Eisley,
Melanie Avalon, Holly Twyford and Markus Taylor. Costume Designer - Jessica Lee; Art Director
- Aidan FioRito; Production Designer - Michael Fitzgerald; Cinematographer -
Collin Brazie; Editor - Phil Bucci; Composer - Jacob Yoffee; Co-Producers -
Matthew Perniciaro, Producers - Dylan K. Narang & Jeff Robinson;
Writer/Director - Dylan K Narang; Produced by Foggy Bottom Pictures; HD; 83
April 3, 2020