Director Joe McReynold’s (“The Vern: A One Hit Wonder Story”) newest film, Inhumanity (2018) has a strong opening that reflects both the bellowing, multilayered sound of Gaspar Noe’s ‘Enter the Void’ mixed with the flashbacks and graphics of a dated late 80’s crime television show.
While the first few minutes of the film attempt to establish a convoluted, multilayered plot, the unique style and genre bending of the film piques the viewers attention. Unfortunately, the manner in which the rest of the film unfolds does little to capture our attention and hold it enough to allow us to be invested.
In summary, the film follows newcomer Darcell Danielle, Jessa Dixon (“2 Years Of Love”, “Waco (TV)”) who, after being attacked by a notorious criminal, wakes up from a coma to find her father (a local Texas police officer) has committed suicide.
In an attempt to bring her father to justice, Darcell (with the help of her stereotypical private-detective partner) uncovers a deeper corporate conspiracy plot involving what seem to be a mad scientist, the police and her attacker.
Within the first ten minutes, the film loosely establishes each plotline, but doesn’t linger long enough on each situation to build enough tension.
Normally, fast cuts and lack of context development can work for a neo-noir crime thriller. However, in this instance, McReynold’s has bit off more of a complex plot than he can chew.
Despite the lack of plot development, McReynold’s work does echo classic neo-noir thrillers of the past while maintaining a unique style. With more fleshed out plot, less cheesy one-liners and some improvement in editing, the film does have potential.
Nonetheless, McReynold’s, with Inhumanity, has perhaps accidentally found a place for himself amongst the assemblage of low budget thrillers that rely too heavily on style and aesthetic while letting plot, dialogue and acting quality suffer in silence. This is not to say that McReynold’s doesn’t have potential.
Darcell Danielle, the main actress has an obvious range and a natural demeanor on camera that makes her scenes easier to watch. With more dedication, a clearer idea of pacing and a less convoluted plot, the film could have potential.