Hypnotic

This is a fairly predictable psychological thriller emphasis on the psychological part. This is a Netflix release that is pretty slick, but also formulaic You can do worse, but there are a lot better versions of this story.

Jenn Thompson, is struggling to overcome past traumas. She’s played by the ever wonderful Kate Siegel. Her friend Gina, played by Lucie Guest, recommends her therapist Dr. Meade, played by Jason O’Mara. They meet at a party and he gives off an air of creepy confidence. He walks a line between charmingly confident and serial killer confident. Jenn decides to see him and he recommends hypnosis. After a couple of sessions of hypnosis, Jenn’s life is going great. The treatments are working, and her life is on a serious upswing. However, one night she receives a mysterious phone call and falls into a trance. She comes to several hours later to a chaotic scene. What is going on?

Well it’s kind of obvious. The obviously villainous Dr. Meade has done something to her during their hypnosis sessions. It’s pretty clear to any viewer what’s going on, and in most movies it takes forever for the characters to catch up to the audience. In this movie, Jenn starts to catch up very quickly. She is a smart protagonist. She pieces it together and tries to find a work around for the hypnotic power Dr. Meade holds over her.

There are some startling and pretty unsettling moments in which Jenn is rendered powerless under Meade’s hypnotic suggestion. His commanding voice is enough to render her helpless. It amounts to some really good moments. There’s a really creepy sequence in which one of Meade’s patients goes after a police detective who is getting too close. She stalks through his house in creepy fashion.

I like all the actors. They do good work and give nice performances. In particular I like Kate Kiegel. She always has a fierce intelligence and determination in her work. I also enjoyed Dule Hill as the police detective. He has a very cool edge to him as well as a weariness that really works. Jason O’Mara is steely and creepy.

In the end, the movie just doesn’t amount to a lot. It’s a boilerplate thriller with a few nice elements that plays out and resolves about exactly as you’d expect. It’s not particularly bad, but it doesn’t bring anything new to the table. It’s a very mild cup of tea, but it’s still my cup of tea. B

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