Rick Ravanello and Dina Meyer in Imaginary Playmate (2006)

Friend or Foe

Sometime after the death of his wife Michael Driscoll (Rick Ravanello) marries the attractive and creative Suzanne (Dina Meyer) who along with Michael's daughter Molly (Cassandra Sawtell) move from Chicago to a rural town for a new start. For Michael that means trying to turn around a failing timber mill whilst Suzanne sets about fixing up their new home. When Molly starts talking to an imaginary friend she calls Candace, Suzanne just thinks it is a way of her coping with everything from losing her mum to moving to a new place. But then some strange things start to happen and Suzanne begins to worry that Candace may actually be a ghost and that the house or Molly is hexed.

Some may say the biggest problem with "Imaginary Playmate" is that it is a made for TV movie, I disagree as made for TV movies are made for a specific crowd, usually an audience who don't need grit or realism but prefer familiarity and the ease in which a movie is to watch. And technically "Imaginary Playmate" delivers what this sort of audience would want with some familiar, easy on the eye actors, a slim sense of mystery and slight horror whilst not being so gritty or complex that it taxes their brains too much.

The biggest problem is that "Imaginary Playmate" takes a familiar storyline and doesn't do anything new with it. So we have the young child, the step mother, the invisible friend who ends up being a danger to the family but there isn't really anything different to what has been done in other big screen movies about invisible friends in a new home. It means for horror fans that stumble across "Imaginary Playmate" and give it a go are likely to find it tedious due to its lack of originality and slow nature.

What this all boils down to is that if you like the easy to digest nature of TV movies but fancy something a little creepier then "Imaginary Playmate" might entertain. But for movie fans, especially of the horror genre, will probably find this all incredibly weak and lacking not just in originality but the sort of shocks which would make it edgy.