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Reviews » DVD Video Reviews » Sight
Sight
Lionsgate Home Entertainment // R // May 20, 2008
List Price: $26.98 [Buy now and save at Amazon]
Review by Justin Felix | posted May 3, 2008 | E-mail the Author
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The Movie:

Horror film fans should give Lionsgate a lot of credit, as the company has been distributing quite a lot of interesting low budget fright films that I'm not sure would receive wide distribution otherwise. Typically, the company releases such films with quality presentations (Catacombs being a dreadful exception), and Sight, while far from perfect, is certainly another example of a movie I'm glad Lionsgate got a hold of.

In Sight, we're introduced to Jeffrey, a suicidal young man who sees images of the vengeful dead in dark corners. His apartment is lit by numerous lights, which remain on even as he sleeps. One evening, Jeffrey meets Dana, a young woman who he learns shares his unique ability to see the dead as they have an extended discussion at a coffee shop. Jeffrey agrees to help Dana deliver food from a soup kitchen to the elderly and the infirm the next day. At this soup kitchen, he meets Paul, a vulgar thug of a guy who tells him to lay off Dana. But, when Dana calls Jeffrey in the middle of the night, he picks her up and takes her back to his place despite Paul's warnings. Paul breaks into Jeffrey's apartment soon afterward and beats the living daylights out of him. Two or so years later, Jeffrey awakens from a coma to learn that Dana has disappeared. The rest of the film centers upon Jeffrey's obsessive pursuit to find Dana.

Adam Ahlbrandt, the writer, composer, and director of Sight is to be commended here. His screenplay is interesting and engaging. The score nicely sets a tone of foreboding and dread. Ahlbrandt also makes good use of some rundown locations in Philadelphia, where this film was shot. As with a number of other recent fright flicks, scenes have a washed-out color scheme here, with "present day" material favoring green and "flashback" sequences black and white. These elements of the film all work really well.

Unfortunately, the same can't be said for the cast. Clayton Haske is all right in his role as Jeffrey in the second half of the film when his character is alone and reminiscent of the awakened-from-a-lengthy-coma protagonist in Stephen King's Dead Zone. But he has absolutely zero chemistry with Allison Persaud, who plays Dana. Persaud gives about the most lifeless performance I've seen in a horror film since Maggie Grace sleepwalked through the atrocious remake of The Fog released a few years back. Haske and Persaud are terrible together and listening to them state their lines in zombie-like fashion, especially in the lengthy coffee shop scene, saps all the energy out of the first third of the film. The following two-thirds of the film are then tainted because it's unclear why Jeffrey would be so obsessive about finding Dana.

Acting aside, Sight is ultimately a worthwhile low budget exercise in eerie mood and spectral scares, though I'm not sure it warrants repeat viewings.

The DVD

Video:

Sight is presented on this DVD with an anamorphic 16x9 widescreen image. As I stated in my comments on the film itself, this movie has a deliberately washed-out look favoring green in color scenes with extensive flashback sequences in black and white. So, don't expect vivid colors or a super-sharp image - although, to be honest, whatever faults may appear in the visual image can easily be written off by the viewer as part of the purposeful ambience of the movie itself.

Sound:

There is only one audio track offered on this DVD and it's Dolby Digital 2.0. Dialogue seemed muted at times, but otherwise, it sounded nicely mixed. This is a horror movie, so be prepared for sudden brief jumps in volume during scare scenes.

Subtitles are available in English and Spanish.

Extras:

When the disc is played, trailers automatically precede the main menu for The Eye (the Jessica Alba horror vehicle), Retribution, Seance, and The Backwoods. A title card for each film's trailer precedes the trailer itself. I'm not sure I've ever seen this done before on a DVD; it's a nice idea in that you can quickly fast forward to the next trailer without having to wait through the green MPAA statement to see which trailer it is. These four trailers are made available collectively under an Also from Lionsgate link in the "Special Features" menu.

And that is it for the extras. No Sight-related bonus features are present on this DVD.

Final Thoughts:

Sight has an interesting premise and shows that Adam Ahlbrandt is an up and coming talent to watch. Had the acting in this film been better - or had Lionsgate provided some extra features - I probably would have sided with a recommendation for this movie. But, as the film and its DVD release stands, I'd suggest "Rent It" to horror film fans enthusiastically.

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