Mimic: Sentinel


Action / Horror / Sci-Fi / Thriller


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July 05, 2015 at 10:18 AM



Rebecca Mader as Carmen
Alexis Dziena as Rosy Montrose
Amanda Plummer as Simone Montrose
Lance Henriksen as Garbageman
720p 1080p
694.82 MB
23.976 fps
12hr 0 min
P/S 2 / 1
1.24 GB
23.976 fps
12hr 0 min
P/S 1 / 2

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Brandt Sponseller 9 / 10

Roach Window

Series note: As the Mimic films are not direct continuations of the same storyline--they're simply related thematically and in some subject matter--it does not really matter what order you watch them in.

It's no secret that Mimic 3 has a number of similarities to Alfred Hitchcock's Rear Window (1954). In fact, as writer/director J.T. Petty comments in his interview on the DVD extras, "Rear Window with giant cockroaches" was the high-concept pitch-line presented to him fresh out of New York University's film school, solely on the basis of his student film, Soft for Digging (2001), which won a Special Jury Prize at the 2003 Boston Independent Film Festival. What's less frequently talked about is that Mimic: Sentinel is a challengingly artistic, well-made film that weaves various themes of voyeurism throughout its length. Even its subtitle, "Sentinel", has numerous intended meanings, including various senses of "guard" or "protector", and of course, "watcher".

Mimic: Sentinel centers its plot on Marvin (Karl Geary) and his unusual family--sister Rosy (Alexis Dziena) and mom Simone (Amanda Plummer). Marvin is a survivor of Strickler's disease--the affliction that was wiping out most of New York City's kids at the beginning of the first Mimic (1997). This has caused him to seem slightly like a cross between someone with Down's Syndrome and autism, with a boatload of asthma-related allergies to boot. In other words, he can barely leave the house without severe threat to his health. So he spends most of the time in his room in a large Brooklyn apartment building, voyeuristically studying the neighbors in the building across the street while he snaps photographs of them. He has a large wall of snapshots with nicknames for everyone, including the mysterious "garbage man". It's not long before Marvin observes some strange occurrences, including what he says is the murder of Rosy's friend Desmond (Keith Robinson). This initiates relationships with a couple other key characters--one a cop, one a beautiful woman from across the street, and gradually we enter more typical Mimic (monster-attack horror) territory.

The three Mimic films to date comprise what is without a doubt one of the most unique horror film series. Each film has a completely different style and focus, yet all are related in significant ways, and each is very good to excellent. This third film is probably the most artistically "difficult" entry. Eventually, during the climax, Petty takes a slightly more conventional route, as I'm sure he had to per the producers and studio, but he still manages to retain his unique vision throughout Mimic: Sentinel's length.

Petty takes his time when it comes to pacing, and he doesn't give you the material you'd probably expect right away, despite the brief, conventional attack scene of the prologue (although note how Petty dwells on the victim's eyeglasses--yet another metaphor for looking at the world through a voyeuristic veil).

For a long time, we see most of the "action" through Marvin's camera, occasionally through Marvin's window without the camera, and even through the photographs on Marvin's wall (this aspect is a nice nod to Remi's photo fetish in Mimic 2, 2001). At one point Petty even presents important scenes as a series of photographic stills, similar to Chris Marker's La Jetée (1962), which Petty would surely be familiar with as an NYU film student.

The shots through Marvin's camera all emphasize an artificial "framing" in a 1.85:1 aspect ratio, to underscore the inherent voyeurism of films and film watching. This is also done in a more purely stylistic way during the climax, where Petty adds a fuzzy-edged circular aperture around the frame, giving an effect something like watching the film through someone else's eye. There are various other often subtle instantiations of voyeurism and related themes throughout the film, including characters who are inside various kinds of containers (a sewer, a trunk, a refrigerator, an implication of in a wall, clear plastic sheeting, etc.), which are then either perforated so that others can see inside while not being completely visible or in the same space, or which are transparent and afford a somewhat sheltered view.

Even when the "horror material proper" finally begins, Petty makes the brilliant move of showing most of it from a distance. For example, we watch an attack from Marvin's room, looking out his window to the building across the street. At that point, I wanted the film to continue in that highly unusual mode, as it underscored the theme so well, so it was a bit of a let down at first when Petty had to become more conventional. But as I mention above, he still retains his original touch during the conventional material too.

Petty's unusual pacing and approach also gave even greater weight to his surprisingly brutal gore scenes. I particularly loved the long, lingering tracking shot through an apartment after a bloody attack. That had far more impact than actually seeing the attack would have had. And once Lance Henriksen's character arrives in full force, the film takes a refreshingly bizarre and slightly nihilistic turn.

Speaking of Henriksen, he is excellent as always (what genre fan doesn't love Lance Henriksen? He's even great in the bad films he does, like The Untold (aka Sasquatch), 2002). The rest of the cast turns in great performances, too, partially because they're so odd. I was a bit disappointed that the film is so short (the credits start rolling at the 72 minute mark), but on the other hand, the story is complete as it stands. It's more important that the film is the right length to tell the story.

In Petty's DVD extras interview, he says that working with actors who have a lot of dialogue made him want to only do romantic comedies in the future. Don't do it! This is such a fine, unique horror film that Petty needs to work much more in this genre.

Reviewed by bmovieboy 9 / 10

rear window with giant cockroaches

It does start off slow but well acted, directed, written by newcomer J.T. Petty. However the last climactic scenes shows how well placed shots, edits, lighting and sound can do for a low budget monster flick. The CG and puppetry were well balanced, hiding weaknesses, using their strengths. Very good payoff for graphic violent mayhem. Could have been a bit more action for my common denominator needs but I did cringe a few times, feeling somewhat mortal.

Some minor critiques. The exterior lighting with high contrast and great shadows was superb but the lighting for interiors was too even and felt like a TV studio set. Of course the whole thing felt filmed in a studio but the exterior had more contrast, style where as interiors seemed to just do the 'play it safe' sort of BBC lighting.

Good job to actors, great sound, nicely done set painters though a bit more obvious then subtle. Interesting music score.

Reviewed by furtim 10 / 10

Astoundingly good direct-to-video second sequel...

Two words describe this movie: astoundingly good. I watched this direct-to-video sequel expecting a cheesefest that would manage to be enjoyable in spite of itself (much like 'Mimic 2'). Instead, I was rewarded with a... well... I'm hesitant to call it "brilliant", but that's basically what it was. This sequel took the series in a direction I never would have expected and, on top of that, did it very tastefully. The characters were all very real and likeable, and there were no ridiculous heroics to be found (well, the conclusion is a bit suspect, but I'll allow it).

I won't bother trying to summarise the movie, as others have done a good job of that, but I did want to add my comments to the plus side on this one.

The rental clerk might look at you funny, but go out and get this gem anyway. You'll thank yourself 80 minutes later. And even if you don't like it... Hey, it's only 80 minutes!

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