July 27, 2015

VOD Review: Rebound (2015)

Rebound is a little movie (and by little we mean micro-budgeted) that we had no idea even existed until we were sent a screener. That's the case with many a movie that we watch, but this one piqued our interest because of writer director Megan Freels Johnson; you see, she's the Granddaughter of Elmore Leonard, and being huge fans of his for most of our adult lives*, we wanted to see what his kin had in them, narratively speaking.

Having now seen Rebound, we can say that while not perfect, it would have made Dutch proud.

*On a side note, if you aren't familiar with the name Elmore Leonard, you need to get yourself right and Google the man. If you're not in the mood to read, then head over to Amazon and check out Justified, which is streaming free for Prime Members. Watch it all until the phrase "We dug coal together" is as embedded in your minds as it is ours. You'll be better off for it.

Alright, enough of that... it's Rebound time.

After catching her scumbag boyfriend cheating on her with some local strumpet, Claire actually does something rational and intelligent; she leaves, deciding that getting away from him and his cheating ways  is really the best option for her. We're not sure that Chicago is the place to go when you need to get your head straight and start anew, but then we're from Detroit, so really, who are we to judge.

While making her escape to the Windy City, Claire not only loses her cellphone (of course), but she experiences car trouble (double of course) which leaves her stranded in some creepy little town that is filled with a bunch of creepy people... where she's promptly roofied by the biggest creep of them all, because he thinks that she's a flirty whore. The poor girl just has no luck with men.

Claire comes to in some ramshackle garage, tied up and gagged, and at the complete mercy of Creepy McCreeperson. All he wants to do though is cut her hair, do her nails, and make her see how naturally beautiful she can really be, so maybe she's finally found a decent guy who sees her for who she really is? Then again, maybe not...

Rebound is as much of a Psychological Thriller as it is anything else, at least in a way; it boasts a quiet, almost Noirish feel about it that makes the whole thing feel haunted in its atmosphere, at least in the early-going. It eventually treads into more familiar Horror grounds, and even gets a bit Lychian with some of its minor characters. Overall though, it's a fairly simple and straight-forward movie that is solid if not remarkablem and that's about as much as we can ask for when we spend 80+ minutes of our time watching something these days.

Rebound is well-written, which is really not much a a surprise to us; writer director Megan Freels Johnson is the Granddaughter of Elmore Leonard after all, and you don't come from that bloodline without having at least a decent grasp on the fundamentals of writing, especially where dialog is concerned. And she does.

Rebound also offers a few uncomfortable scenes of torture which involve knives going into legs, and a series of disturbing beauty tips, the nastiest of which was the nail polish removal scene... of course all of that is topped off nicely with some good old-fashioned mallet violence. It's a love story, folks.

The twist at the end was different, to say the least, and it gave the movie's title a special sort of meaning.

Shot and produced on a micro-budget, Rebound is an admirable effort that makes the most out of what it's got. It looks pretty sharp for a smaller movie, and the actors do a decent enough job, but it's the writing that makes this one as solid as it is. It's always the writing folks; much can be forgiven on the visceral front a movie's foundations are solid. If nothing else, Megan Freels Johnson has shown that she knows how to create a solid foundation with Rebound, and we're curious to see what she does next.

If you're a fan of Indie Horror with a different kind of bent, then it's well worth your time to rent Rebound, or maybe grab the DVD when it hits shelves on August 25th.


Rebound is available now on VOD.


These ladies could be our Rebound any day.

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