August 22, 2016
Thomas Kaiser is a reclusive young man who paints art for a living. His nights were regularly interrupted by a recurring dream about a goth princess sleeping in a bed. However, whenever he goes nearer to kiss and wake her, he gets an attack of severe headaches. One day, Thomas receives news of a property called Kaiser Gardens which his recently departed uncle Clive, whom he had never met before, had bequeathed to him in his will.
On the first night Thomas spent at the house, he was actually able to kiss and awaken the girl in his dreams, who introduced herself as Briar Rose. Since then though, Thomas would be afflicted with a strange malaise whenever he stayed out of the house for too long. Furthermore, it turns out that Linda, the realtor of the property, had more than real estate interest in the Kaiser house, as she was investigating the disappearance of her brother last seen entering the house. Together, Thomas and Linda figure out a way of finding Briar Rose and finally breaking the curse that shrouded the house.
The lead actors were relatively unknown TV actors, attractive but bland. Ethan Peck, who played Thomas, is a grandson of Gregory Peck. He started acting 1996 in unremarkable film and tv roles, but only gained prominence in 2009-2010 on the TV series "10 Things I Hate About You". India Eisley, who played the Sleeping Beauty, was most remembered for her role on tv show "The Secret Life of an American Teenager" from 2008-2013. Natalie Hall, who played Linda, had two years on long-running daytime TV soap opera "All My Children" from 2009-2011. The best known member of the cast would be Oscar-nominated actor Bruce Davison ("Longtime Companion", 1989) as paranormal investigator Richard.
Despite the cheesy sounding synopsis as written, the first half of the film was actually pretty well executed by Singaporean writer/director Pearry Reginald Teo. The atmosphere, the cinematography, the special effects were all in sync to create a creepy atmosphere of mystery, which later developed to suspense and horror. However, the end game did not really fulfill the promise of the first half. It devolved into a messy climax and a rushed open conclusion. The ending made the whole film feel like a pilot episode of a potential TV series than a full movie. 4/10