Masters of Horror: Sounds Like

Masters of Horror: Sounds Like

Masters of Horror: Sounds Like (2007)

Blessed (or cursed) with superhuman hearing, Pearce is keenly and painfully aware of everything in the world around him.  Unfortunately for Pearce, his “ability” grows far beyond the point of usefulness into something else.  As the world creeps ever closer into every fiber of his consciousness, he is forced to try even harder to block it all out, driving away those few people who care about him and destroying his marriage, his job and his life.

Sometimes, having a story to tell is both a blessing and a curse for a writer.  Case in point: there’s an intriguing story here, rife with character exploration possibilities.  The path taken in getting there is haphazard at best.  Larry Pearce (Chris Bauer) develops superhuman hearing after his son’s death.  How and why this happens is loosely and awkwardly touched on, but the explanation is nebulous – the story actually would have worked better without the forced explanation of “why” – “sometimes bad things happen to good people” works sometimes.

That said, the tension grows well throughout as Bauer’s character goes from standoffish to completely removed, the pacing is strong and Bauer is phenomenal is his role: his mounting dread is palpable, his weakening grip on sanity comes across powerfully.  The biggest tragedy is that the pointlessness of the setup leaves the resolution empty and unsatisfying – and ending with a poignancy that could have made the whole thing truly memorable if the approach hadn’t been so clumsy.  This is a short film that could have been shorter and been much better.

 

Stars: 2/5

 

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