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Medium Raw (2010): The Lunatic Is in the Hall

Medium Raw (Andrew Cymek, 2010)

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“Medium Raw” equates to “not well done.” Appropriate.

Cymek’s second feature, and his only one to date that is not part of the Dark Rising series of horror comedies, is a generic the lunatics have broken out of the asylum (literally) thriller. It’s saved from being complete crap thanks to one excellent character, but I’m not sure that pushed it over the line from “don’t bother” to “watch this.”

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“and I will hug him and love him and squeeze him and call him George.”

Plot: A number of civilians, through various rather silly excuses, find themselves inside a dark, windowless, nasty asylum after dark, as do some of the staff. A power outage coupled with a computer failure lead to the inmates being released from their cells, forcing the sane folks to try and find ways to survive until help arrives.

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“And as soon as they let me out of here, I have a contract lined up with Food Network–I can make a whole season out of just Anthony Bourdain!”

Simple yes, and also predictable, as well as being overall badly-acted. The direction is competent, if barely so, and the script (written by Cymek) is nothing special, with a single exception: Mabel (The Rocker‘s Sandi Ross), a serial killer/cannibal who wants to be your best friend, right up until she eats your eyeballs. Mabel’s a fantastic character, easily the best-drawn in the movie; given the characters surrounding her, this would seem to be a case of “even a stopped clock is right twice a day.” I wish she’d shown up in a much better movie than this. **

“…and Medium Raw is the trailer!”

About Robert "Goat" Beveridge

Media critic (amateur, semi-pro, and for one brief shining moment in 2000 pro) since 1986. Guy behind noise/powerelectronics band XTerminal (after many small stints in jazz, rock, and metal bands). Known for being tactless but honest.

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