13 SINS (REVIEW)
Dir. Daniel Stamm
Reviewer. Martyn Wakefield
Elliott (Mark Webber) is a man who has everything yet at an all-time low. Losing his job and preparing to get married to Shelby (Rutina Wesley) in the same week. Add into the mix his disabled brother, Michael (Devon Graye), and elderly father (Tom Bower) and Elliott is a man about to lose the will to live. That is until one day he receives an anonymous phone call telling him he will receive $1,000 for splatting a fly and a further few hundred for eating it.
Hard to believe this is happening, he continues but as the stakes get higher, the money and his morals grow further apart. The mastermind behind the 13 acts may be anarchy himself but the mystery is well masked with money and morale questioning putting the ball in the player’s court. A grade A, fucked up, killer who himself, doesn’t kill anyone.
Now where have we seen this before? The SAW series, WOULD YOU RATHER and now 13 SINS all part of a modern horror genre that pits morality against the darker sides of human nature. Where 13 SINS steps away from the others is in its sense of fun, at least to begin with. Trashing a wedding, taking a corpse for a coffee and hacking the arm of your high school bully are all worth their price alone but this goes from fun to fucked up quicker than you can say “Who Wants to be a Millionaire?”
Daniel Stamm, after his cult success of THE LAST EXORCISM, has created another cult sensation that matches guts and glory to be a great watch that not only rewards with laughs but is never shy of showing its razor blades.
The performance from Webber is fantastic and takes the unrelatable subject of a sane man doing the worst for money to a level of believability that makes the final chapter both shocking and viciously disturbing. A shame the supporting roles from Wesley and Ron Perlman are so underused. For a 15 rated film, 13 SINS pushes the boundaries and brings some squeamish scenes along with its sense of humour. This title may not be the most original plot in recent cinema but it sure is a whole lot of fun.