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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gave me a case of the willies that's into its 3rd year...
I don't actually like horror flicks, and this movie is one of the main reasons why. Not because it sucked, but because it did its job too well (on me at least). It's creepy and smart and suspenseful and creepy and gripping and creepy... I saw this thing purely by accident a few years ago on a sunny summer afternoon and I STILL have nightmares about the ending (the movie's...
Published on Feb. 7 2006 by Ian Anderson

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Creepy, but missed the mark with unanswered questions
I watched Session 9 last night before I went to bed. It was around 11:30, and I didn't turn off the set until after 1:00.
Big mistake.
I went to sleep on edge, feeling really weird, like all the dark shadows contained some sort of...I don't know.
And that's just it: I don't know.
I don't now what the antagonist was in Session 9. I don't know what the...
Published on Oct. 6 2002 by Just Bill


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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gave me a case of the willies that's into its 3rd year..., Feb. 7 2006
By 
Ian Anderson "moviestar222" (Toronto, ON, Canada) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Session 9 [Import] (DVD)
I don't actually like horror flicks, and this movie is one of the main reasons why. Not because it sucked, but because it did its job too well (on me at least). It's creepy and smart and suspenseful and creepy and gripping and creepy... I saw this thing purely by accident a few years ago on a sunny summer afternoon and I STILL have nightmares about the ending (the movie's not called Session 9 for nothing). Minimal violence/gore, true, but you know the old adage abut how "less is more"? Brrrr, I've got the heebie-jeebies all over again just thinking about it. To conclude, I may have been permanently traumatized by Session 9, and if that doesn't deserve a 5-star rating I don't know what does.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars CREEPY!, May 7 2004
This review is from: Session 9 [Import] (DVD)
This is a very disturbing film! Creepy special effects, excellent (yet creepy) cinematography, and a VERY creepy soundtrack that will send chills down your spine. The acting (for the most part) was nothing to brag about, but the performance on behalf of Peter Mullan was excellent.
This is not a movie for people who are without a brain; you will have to put your thinking caps on for this one. I strongly recommend watching it more then once because there are things that you will probably miss the first time around. This truly is a psychological thriller, and one that will most likely freak you out! I found the amount of profanity in this movie to be both unnecessary and annoying, but other then that....it's pretty clean. If you like intelligently made horror movies (they are rare today) you will love this film.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Creepy, but missed the mark with unanswered questions, Oct. 6 2002
By 
Just Bill (Grand Rapids, MI United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Session 9 [Import] (DVD)
I watched Session 9 last night before I went to bed. It was around 11:30, and I didn't turn off the set until after 1:00.
Big mistake.
I went to sleep on edge, feeling really weird, like all the dark shadows contained some sort of...I don't know.
And that's just it: I don't know.
I don't now what the antagonist was in Session 9. I don't know what the point of the movie was. I don't know what to make of the ending. Was it supernatural, like The Shining? Or was it merely psychological, like any guy-under-pressure-kills-people movie?
I don't know.
The asylum was way beyond creepy. It, alone, deserves the three stars I gave this movie. But the plot is weak, and the wrap-up was even weaker. More spookiness could have been wrung out of this movie if the writer/director had utilized the setting more effectly and shown flashbacks to when the asylum was in full use. Or shown ghosts. Or shown things moving in the asylum that weren't human. Or something.
I can't recommend Session 9 -- although I wish I could. It's a great idea. But it was flawed in its execution.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Gothic thriller , Rubbish!!, March 19 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: Session 9 [Import] (DVD)
I rented this DVD the other day thinking it would be a scary movie. The only thing scary about this movie is that it was put on film in the first place. It could have been a good movie if Alfred Hitchcock had come back from the grave to direct it. The movie starts out so well but by the time it ends you have spent so much time trying to figure out who the killer is that you are not paying attention to subtle clues in the movie. The only unsettling thing about this movie is the time I wasted watching it. The movie never comes together.The story was a good one, it was just a shame the movie wasn't.
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4.0 out of 5 stars much more realistic than i expected, May 20 2004
This review is from: Session 9 [Import] (DVD)
i thought this would be a supernatural movie. its not. its about these several guys who go to an abandoned mental asylum to clean it from its old, old...stuff. 2 of the cleaners in particualr are alittle off from the begining. one of them keeps having flashbacks and suffers a hidden mental breakdown, while the rest endure odd happenings inside the creepy asylum. throughout the entire movie it somehow keeps you interested. i guess because its so confusing and you just want to figure out what the hells going on! theres very few scary parts, which makes those few parts even more impactful. at the end, the film reveals, somewhat, what all the twists in the movie were about and what exactly was going on with the characters. they all go alittle crazy by the end, yet one in particular just loses it and...well, youll see. the first time i watched it, and so far the only time i watched it, i hated the movie because it gave all of this suspense which lead up to a completely confusing dud ending. but then, after i thought about it for hours, i figured it out...partially. i do believe they shouldve left the alternate subplot in there about the homeless lady. yes, it would have made it even more confusing, but still, it was a better ending. and by the way, for those of you who didnt understand what was going on with the alternate footage---turn the commentary on! my suggestions is dont buy it at first. rent it. then, dont judge it at first. think about it till your head falls off. but heres a hint: the only reason its so complicated, is because its so simple. oh, and i forgot to mention one of the best addons in the movie---the very believable mary hobbes. shes the woman in the session tapes that has multiple personalities. at the end we finally get to hear simon speak as he infests our imagination with lines that tie the movies plots all together...kind of.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The weak and the wounded..., April 26 2004
By 
Deckard (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Session 9 [Import] (DVD)
I can forgive the guy who said that the Session 9 tape after which the film is title, was 'Ultimately, a Macguffin', because I assume that he thinks a Macguffin is something served at McDonalds with egg and bacon.. Quite obviously to anyone who experiences the film with their eyes and ears, the 'session 9' tape is the complete embodiment of the psycholoogical theme of the film. It's the recorded session where the personification of the patient's potential repressed capability for evil finally manifests - the trait of humanity that the voice describes as living in 'the weak and the wounded'. So there's a huge and blindingly obvious parallel between the patient's final session, and Gordon - even to the extent that the final tape plays out as we begin to uncover the truth about him. And as for 'confusing sub-plots', what sub plots? Is someone really complaining about a subplot about a vagrant woman that was REMOVED in it's entirity from the film by the director because he felt it didn't work? Erm... what? Incidently, these scenes are available as extras along side a nice documentary and a superb commentary from some great filmmakers. The film expertly straddles the line between psychological and supernatural horror intermingling the two with creepy and disturbing expertese. It's superb, a great story that is brilliantly performed, and directed. If you're not afraid to engage your brain, give it a watch!
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5.0 out of 5 stars An underappriciated beauty, April 24 2004
By 
Abby (Pittsburg, Kansas United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Session 9 [Import] (VHS Tape)
I had never heard of "Session 9" until a couple of weeks ago. Ever since I saw it, I can talk of nothing else. It's absolutely AMAZING, and it's sad that it's so overlooked. "Session 9" is like no other horror movie I've ever seen and leaves the viewer absolutely dumbfounded. If nothing else, it'll make you more afraid of the dark than you ever were before.
It's nearly impossible to summarize the plot without giving away the entire film, but I'll do my best. The setup: a crew is preparing an abandoned mental hospital for construction. Gordon, the leader of the crew, has held his position for a long time, and thinks that the stress is beginning to get to him. Then the strange things start to happen. One member of the crew discovers a room filled with psycologist's session tapes of the various patients. He starts listening to the sessions of a schizophrenic girl named Mary, who has three personalities: The Princess, Billy, and the eluisve Simon, who we don't hear from until the very end of the film. Another crew member goes missing, and Phil, Gordon's second in command, starts becoming wary of his superior's behavior, and maybe even gets a little power-hungry when he realizes that Gordon might not last too much longer. After a strange discovery, things begin to spiral out of control, leading to a completely unexpected ending.
"Session 9" is one of the most unpredictable horror films I've ever seen, which is a rarity in today's films like "Gothika" and "The Ring" which, while artsy, most people had figured out a quarter of the way into the movie. Everything is shot very cleanly and artfully and never sacrifices explanations for aesthetics. The soundtrack is very minimal, just a few well-placed "pings" of piano keys, as well as the occasional weird sound effect.
Every horror buff should see this movie. It's one of those rare beauties that sparks lengthy and entertaining discussions afterwards. Oh, one more word of warning: DO NOT WATCH THIS MOVIE BY YOURSELF. Doing so would make it terrifying beyond belief. Enjoy.
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4.0 out of 5 stars The REAL Danvers Mental Hospital,MA-Pioneers Of The LOBOTOMY, March 22 2004
This review is from: Session 9 [Import] (DVD)
The Danvers Mental Hospital is a REAL, honest-to-goodness asylum in Massachusetts that pioneered and perfected the frontal lobotomy. Built in the 1850's and closed in the mid-1980's due to lack of state funding, this movie is filmed entirely(camcorder style)in the once crowded (with over 2500 patients) & still to this day, horribly sinister asylum. I must say, that the undisputed STAR OF THIS FILM is the ASYLUM, itself. The cast does a better than average job in delivering real characters, however...
A group of Hazmat workers are hired to accomplish the task of asbestos removal in the gargantuan hospital. Gordon, the crew boss, promises that the job will be finished in 7 days. Each crew member will receive 10 LARGE as a bonus once they meet the deadline, which, no matter how many eerie, odd & unexplained things start to happen in the asylum and to the workers, the promise of the money keeps them all to their appointed task.
This movie is filmed very effectively a la Stanley Kubrick's "The Shining" style. That is to say, each day of the week is stated, a shot of the asylum is shown & then the day is filmed. This is a frequently used tactic that screenwriters/directors use to build a sense of foreboding, and BOY, DOES IT EVER WORK in this film. Great cinematography & a really frighteningly strange musical score help to build the sense of inducing madness that this film makes you feel. It also has borrowings of "The Sixth Sense" inasmuch, clues are given throughout the film so that you may figure out for yourself, (if you are paying close attention) what oddities and malevolent forces are at work in the asylum & in the plot. You will experience what REALLY "Lives in the Weak and Wounded..." I guarantee it!
If you liked the plot twists in Sixth Sense, the madness of The Shining, or the otherworldly spirits that inhabited Stir Of Echos, you will enjoy Session 9!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Session 9 good film worth viewing, Feb. 11 2004
This review is from: Session 9 [Import] (DVD)
Session 9 was an intense relentlessly terrifying film. The movie takes place in an abandonded insane Asylum. Four workers take on the project of restoring the place before a one week dead line. Many of the men working on the project desperately need the money making this job stressful and tiring. During the film the viewer begins to question the sanity of two of the characters in the film. We don't find out until the end if the old institution is causing psychological problems in the men are if one of the men are simply crazy to begin with. The film is shot with a different kind of film(Not like most films are shot these days) I don't now the technical term for it but its almost has a high quality handheld camera feeling. The music in the movie is really creepy and helps make some of the scene's scare factor go up. Though most of the film relies on mostly pychological terror there is some gore towards the end. The movie was well acted and the characters were believable. In short this is a good movie with some scenes that are very terrifing and disturbing with a ending that is both surprising and frightning. This is Definantly not a film for the faint of heart.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Disturbing thriller cause shudders,but too long in the tooth, Jan. 10 2004
By 
This review is from: Session 9 [Import] (DVD)
Actually only 3 1/2 stars, but I'm giving the benefit of the doubt.
Fifteen years ago, the Psychiatric Hospital on the hill was closed and 2400 patients transferred or let loose. Now it is time to clean up the building, and Gordon Fleming barely manages to get the bid, promising almost impossibly quick results in order to save his business.
Gordon and his friend Phil hire extra men to get the job done, including Hank, who is dating Phil's ex-girlfriend and does not mince words with Phil about it. Our crew is filled in with Bill and Jeff, who is Gordon's young nephew.
The old buildings are now graffiti ridden, dangerous with water damage and heavy with asbestos. During their original tour, Gordon hears a voice speaking to him from down the hallway of ward C, the ward reserved for the most dangerous of patients.
Delving immediately into the huge project, we catch glimpses of each character and see their responses to the eerie environment of their job. Bill runs across some old tapes of a long dead female patient, labeled Sessions 1-9, and begins listening to them. She had multiple personalities, and the more Bill listens, the more disturbed he becomes.
Hank finds a treasure in the wall that enclosed the old crematorium, and abruptly leaves both his job and his girlfriend to go to a casino school in Florida, but young Jeff finds him stalking the grounds of the asylum, and after that things get really weird.
Without revealing anything further about the movie, let me tell you what I liked and disliked about it.
What I liked was the spectacular scenery, stunningly beautiful footage of the old hospital, and deeply sinister shots of its rotting interior. Location was used to astounding effect, providing one of the chilliest atmospheres I have ever seen. Add to that some eerie tunnels with only flashlights for lighting, sunlight streaming hazily through dirty windows, amazing cinematography utilizing the shoot scene to its fullest. Not to mention a creepy storyline of bad things happening in a bad place, and stellar acting by David Caruso and supporting cast.
What I didn't like was that the development was too slow for true terror to strike me, there was too much filler dialogue and too many scenes with nothing important happening. The movie could have been tightened down quite a bit without loosing the magnificent photogenic effects, almost as if not quite enough film hit the editing floor. With 100 minutes not being a long movie, this particular story might have been a better effort at 90 minutes, cutting the dribble here and there that left me starving for the tastier parts.
It's possible that I'm just too jaded for this type of experiment, but I failed to feel any real threat...no tantalizing shiver for my safety and well-being. Too loosely does the movie travel until we finally see any form of evil, and in that I found it to be a bit fatiguing instead of intriguing.
Still, its chilling atmosphere makes up a great deal for the drudgery, and you will want to stick around and find out what Simon has to say. Enjoy!
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Session 9 [Import]
Session 9 [Import] by Brad Anderson (DVD - 2002)
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