The Weak and the Wounded)
Release Date: August 10th, 2001.
Written by: Brad Anderson and Stephen Gevedon.
Directed by: Brad Anderson.
Starring: Peter Mullan, David Caruso, Josh Lucas, Stephen Gevedon, Brendan Sexton III, and Larry Fessenden.
One of the best pure Horror movies of the new millennium (or that we've ever seen, period), Session 9 is a quiet, eerie movie that will get under your skin and stay there. For days.
Now, the tough, jaded type of Horror fans who take pride in the fact that nothing can scare them, might be immune to the effects of this movie. Everyone else though, will most likely be freaked out after watching Session 9, especially if you watch it alone, in the dark, and late at night... which is how most Horror movies should always be watched anyhow.
The "What We Learned" section below is going to contain a pretty big spoiler for the movie, and if you haven't seen it yet, we implore you to skip that section completely, until you have. This is a great movie, and it deserves to be seen 100% Spoiler Free. Please don't ruin it for yourselves.
*This is a repost of a review that we did in 2015, updated for the Blu-ray release.
|YEAH, I'M NOT GOING DOWN THERE.|
|SO MUCH DYSFUNCTION!|
...and that's all we're saying about the plot.
|THOSE DAMN TAPES!|
And years after the fact, when we do think about Session 9, we always hear that damn piano music in our heads.
From the start of the movie, you get the feeling that something wrong, and maybe even evil, is afoot here. Mike is virtually lead to the box that contains the session tapes, and once he begins to listen to them, and become obsessed with the disturbing interviews with Mary Hobbes, everything starts going horribly wrong for he and his crew. Are the happenings supernatural, or purely psychological? That's been intentionally left for the viewer to decide for themselves, and you can argue the case for one over the other all you like, but the honest answer is that it's both.
|THE THREE SIDES OF MARY HOBBES.|
The human cast of the movie was pretty damned impressive in this one too. Peter Mullan is one of the best actors working today, who most people probably don't even know about. His work in Session 9, as well as Red Riding and Top of the Lake, is enough to make him one of our faves. Love him or hate him, David Caruso does his best David Caruso here, which is cool with us. Everyone else played their parts well enough.
|THAT SUIT IS NOT GOING TO HELP YOU SURVIVE!|
|NO, FUCK YOU, DAVID!|
|LOOK, THERE'S SOME BLOOD.|
Session 9 is fantastic, and it's likely as good as the movie will ever look. Session 9 was one of the first movies every shot using a 24p camera (you can read about that HERE), which means that it's always going to have that early "Shot on HD" feel to it, but to our eyes, this new transfer registered as nothing but crisp, clear, and gorgeous. The audio is sharp too, although we're not sure why Scream Factory opted to offer only a 2.0 track, completely forgoing a 5.1 mix.
The Special Features include a Commentary Track with Brad Anderson and Michael Gevedon that is absolutely worth a listen; and a nearly hour-long Doc where the cast and crew recall every phase of the movie's production, which was equally as compelling.
- NEW Return To Danvers: The Secrets Of SESSION 9 Featuring Interviews With Director/Co-writer Brad Anderson, Actor/Co-writer Stephen Gevedon, Actors Josh Lucas, Brendan Sexton III, Larry Fessenden, Composers The Climax Golden Twins And Director Of Photography Uta Briesewitz.
- NEW Horror's Hallowed Grounds – Revisiting The Locations of The Film.
- Audio Commentary With Brad Anderson And Stephen Gevedon.
- Deleted Scenes And Alternate Ending With Optional Commentary By Director Brad Anderson.
- Story To Screen Featurette.
- The Haunted Palace Featurette.
- Theatrical Trailer.
Overall, this is an excellent disc which does this excellent movie great justice.
|NO DAVID CARUSO INTERVIEWS THOUGH, WHICH SUCKS.|
Is Session 9 about someone having a mental breakdown, or is there more of a Supernatural element at play here? While Brad Anderson and Stephen Gevedon seemed to have left the ending as ambiguous as possible, and people will argue that it's all about a mental breakdown and nothing more, there's no way that "Simon" isn't an external entity of some kind.
The scene at the beginning of the movie were Gordon sees the chair, we see his face slowly covered by a darkness, and then we hear "Simon's" voice say "Hello, Gordon." Now, he hears the voice before the box with the session tapes is even found and opened (and it's sealed up pretty tightly, in an out of the way location), so there's no way that Gordon heard the tapes or knew about "Simon" before his breakdown, so it can't be a byproduct of his losing his mind.
And as far as that box that holds the Session Tapes goes, be sure to watch that scene carefully; Mike is basically lead to that box by "something," and it's only after its opened that everyone starts freaking out in their own special ways.
So Gordon does have a break from reality and totally loses his shit, but we truly believe that whatever "Simon" is helped to facilitate that break.
"Simon" lives in the weak and the wounded, after all, Doc.
|YOU SHOULDN'T HAVE PLAYED THOSE TAPES.|
Buy this new Scream Factory disc and make sure it's on your Halloween watch list come October.
Session 9 is available now on Blu-ray, and DVD.
Session 9, here are some more stills from the movie, for you to creep yourselves out over. Enjoy.