Kelen Coleman in Cassadaga (2011)

It's Got No Strings to Hold it Up

Following the death of her little sister, deaf art teacher Lily (Kelen Coleman) relocates in the hope of starting again which is how she meets single father Mike (Kevin Alejandro). But Lily is still haunted by what happened to her little sister and after visiting a psychic she finds herself now being haunted by another girl as well as visions of maggots. But this girl seems to be leading her to someone who is connected not only with her own murder but other unsolved murders in the area leading Lily in to danger with someone who has a penchant for building human marionettes.

I won't tell a lie when "Cassadaga" starts it is painfully boring as it seems to take an eternity to get going. It tries to shock with an opening scene which involves self mutilation and then create a creepy atmosphere when Lily rents an outhouse in the land owned by a lady called Claire, played by Louise Fletcher, but in truth none of it does a great job of drawing you in. Even the big scenes such as the visit to a local psychic doesn't do a great deal because unfortunately director Anthony DiBlasi builds up to the big moments too much and so they don't deliver the shocks.

Louise Fletcher in Cassadaga (2011)

What doesn't help "Cassadaga" is that it is ambitious and seems to want to combine a trifecta of horror ideas. It all starts with that bayou style mystery where we have the big mansion surrounded by trees with vines hanging down like long strands of wispy hair. It then seems to want to bring in some Japanese style horror with the whole creepy ghost girl aspects before then becoming torture porn. Sadly all 3 elements don't mingle well and so the movie doesn't come together as well as it could have, ending up coming across as ideas which needed more fine tuning for them to flow together.

As for the acting well Kelen Coleman is attractive and it helps to generate some sort of empathy towards her but unfortunately the writing doesn't allow for her to really create a character. It is the same elsewhere and it all ends up forgettable with actors who with the exception of Louise Fletcher you will end up forgetting not long afterwards.

What this all boils down to is that "Cassadaga" has some nice ideas and is quite ambitious in wanting to combine 3 recognizable horror elements but it doesn't pull it off and only ends up a middle of the road forgettable experience.