What starts off as a promising horror film with an eerie setting, The Power soon gets lost in its own labyrinth of darkness and dissolution.
Let’s face it. There’s something that is imminently scary about hospitals and the thought of death hanging over you and by choosing to set the film in a dilapidated one during the early 70s when the decor is sparse, drawing forth the feeling of isolation amongst the empty corridors heightens this sensation further.
It doesn’t help that the hospital is at the hands of a current mining strike and has the electrical power being shut down at the dead of night, thrusting the audience into constant panic and despair.
Guiding us through the darkness is a young nurse, Val (Rose Williams), new to the hospital and on a temporary probation. She stumbles her way through the rigorous and meticulously structured system within the varying wards. We’re instantly drawn to Val’s empathetic nature, but we soon learn that there’s a reason for her good-hearted nature having been a victim of abuse in her childhood at the Catholic orphanage.
It is her eagerness to please and help others though that finds her on the wrong side of the hierarchy and forced to work the night shift. When darkness will descend on all.
There is something sinister lurking in the darkness that has an instant connection with Val and opens up old wounds among the staff.
Is this presence a dark one though or is there something more to the gloomy outlook?
The initial premise is a strong one and the balance of power between light and darkness, male and female, and social status is constantly shifting and fluctuating through a nicely woven script.
Corrina Faith develops a strongly directed narrative and combined with Laura Bellingham’s (Amulet) visual flair, projecting an atmosphere that chills.
It’s main flaw is that once it builds up the tension, it quickly transcends into predictability and the usual horror tropes that we’ve come accustomed to.
Despite this, the script, performances and direction is tight, making The Power an enjoyable watch regardless.
- Saul Muerte