A man wakes up one day with no memory of who he is or what he has done. To make matters worse, that soft, comfy thing that he thought was a pillow is actually a dead body, and he is in fact lying in a mass grave stuffed full of corpses. Luckily, a mute woman soon arrives to help him out of the pit and he’s taken to a remote house inhabited by a group of other recently-awakened people.
Is one of them a killer? Is he the killer? What does the circled date on the calendar mean? Why can’t he remember anything? These questions and more are what set up the plot of Open Grave, a new mystery thriller with a sci-fi slant that stars Sharlto Copley (The A-Team) in the lead role as its troubled amnesiac.
The premise is pretty intriguing, though it’s undermined a little by the introduction of rage zombies later on. Nothing against rage zombies, but this seems like the kind of plot that could get by without them. Without knowing how all of Open Grave‘s secrets are eventually exposed, however, it’s hard to say for sure whether the raving infected are integrated well into the murder mystery aspect of it all.
Copley’s career has been steadily on the rise since his breakout role in Neill Blomkamp’s 2009 sci-fi District 9, and later this year can be seen playing the villain in Spike Lee’s remake of the intense Korean mystery thriller Oldboy. Aside from The Vampire Diaries and The Originals star Joseph Morgan, the cast is made up of mostly unknown actors. Director Gonzalo López-Gallego is so far best known for the pretty dismal found footage horror Apollo 18, while writers Chris and Eddie Borey are both relative newcomers.
Open Grave was released in Italy earlier this year, and so far the reviews have been fairly mixed and there’s a general consensus from a few different reviewers that it declines in quality after a promising opening. For those who love the genre, however, and want to see Copley going up against rage zombies, this could be worth at least a rental.
Open Grave is out in US theaters on January 3rd, 2014.
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