Someone's Knocking at The Door (2009)

 Chad Ferrin is a dude that likes making fucked up films. Making fucked up films is fine, but every gore hound will tell you it's not just if a film is really fucked up, there needs to be some substance behind the splatter. After showing a shitload of promise (despite budget constraints) on his films 'Unspeakable' and 'The Ghouls' (review), Ferrin really comes into his own as a director and story teller with this, his fourth feature. [Full confession time - I have not seen Ferrins 2006 offering 'Easter Bunny Kill, Kill' but judging by the title, you might see something on it pop up on DreadWorld, say around Easter.] Of course, it's a hell of a lot easier to come in to your own when you can cast genre vets like Noah Segan (Deadgirl), Lew Temple (The Devils Rejects), and Vernon Wells (not the overpaid Angels outfielder. The underrated star of 'The Road Warrior'.)

Segan stars as Justin, leader of a group of med students who are far more interested in ingesting the drugs rather than administering them. When Justin comes upon the story of serial killers Wilma and John Hopper while reading through some papers in an off limits room of the hospital, he also discovers the drug prescribed to treat the killers and thinking nothing of it, decides to partake in some 40 year old injectables. Soon after his friends follow him on the trip of a lifetime. All except Meg, (Andrea Rueda), Justins girlfriend and our innocent virginal heroine, who is in love with Justin for no logical reason (a film pet peeve of mine).

That's all you get as far as plot goes, any more and too much is given away, and too give too much away on this film would be to ruin the entire experience. Ferrin is able to fashion a film that's as much a head trip for the viewer as it is for the characters. Five minutes in, a character literally get his ass rocked, not in that cool Eddie Spaghetti way either, more in that homicidal sodomy way. Believe it or not the film get's weirder from there.

Sagen is great as Justin, the films (somewhat) late arriving lead. He's really done a great job of carving out a little niche for himself in these type of avant garde horror films. He's the sole reason to watch 'Deadgirl' and one of the (many) highlights of the 'Cabin Fever' sequel. Apart for Sagen, the rest of cast, acquits themselves well. Ferrin is able to get some really good stuff out of his rather inexperienced cast. The acting isn't perfect but it's certainly something that's not going to take you out of the film at any point.

Despite having a ton of great stuff going for it 'Someone's Knocking' isn't perfect. Like all of Ferrins films the second act tends to sag. However whereas his other films seemed to drag in part due to budget constraints, this one seems to actually have too much going on. Some of the sub plots, although that's not really the right word, more like unfinished ideas, take away from the narrative and main drive of the film, which is essentially two (very) deranged serial killers knocking off drug addled med school students, seemingly from beyond the grave. Ferrins heart may have been in the right place it that way, the film is afterall told through the perspective of some rather fucked up functioning drug addicts. But given his embarrassment of riches (casting and budget wise) the film would have been better served staying a bit more focused.

Small nitpicking aside, Ferrin proves that given anything even resembling a budget, he can craft a solid, albeit fucked up, narrative. If you haven't seen any of Ferrins films, I suggest starting with 'Unspeakable' and moving forward from there. Not only will you see some of the most disturbing yet imaginative storytelling in some time, but you will also get to see the progression of Ferrin as a director, which in this case, is really a sight to behold.

**** stars out of 5

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