Hitting the shelves today is the long awaited home entertainment release of the Robert Englund starring FEAR CLINIC. Based off of the FEARNET (RIP) series of the same name the full feature was the talk of festivals in 2014. While it’s plain to see what the appeal of the film is, the over the top manifestation of evil that’s created in FEAR CLINIC may rub some viewers the wrong way. Calculated acting and a refreshing take on a psychological horror FEAR CLINIC wins in the intriguing department. As for the fear, well lets just say we expected a tad bit more.
In FEAR CLINIC we find Dr. Andover (Englund) who has built a special chamber to help people open a doorway to suppressed memories to battle their fears. There is a group of survivors from a horrific shooting at a restaurant that all needed Andover’s help in getting over the trauma. The issue is the patients have all returned back to the clinic as the nightmares have picked up and are becoming scarier than ever. It’s not just the patients that are experiencing something frightening. Andover himself is changing in a way he may never come back from.
FEAR CLINIC is a natural late night selection. The look and feel is similar to the films that have dominated the genre in the late 80’s but the cast does a dynamic job of keeping the updated edge intact. With the name FEAR CLINIC one would expect to see constant images of ghastly terror but that really was not the case. So much of the film involves the shooting (with reason) that it takes away the horror feel during the duration. Then when the evil starts to manifest it unfortunately is a less than desirable parlor trick that fails to capture the essence of what you are watching. For a film with such rewarding acting with a refreshed looking Englund it was really painful to see how things played out. There will be a legion of horror fans that enjoy the film as it has some polarizing moments but we feel the overall consensus will be less than stellar. Regardless there is a place for FEAR CLINIC in your horror heart we just aren’t sure how much of it will be filled.
2.5 / 5
FEAR CLINIC is directed Robert G. Hall and stars Robert Englund, Fiona Dourif, Angelina Armani, Thomas Dekker and Corey Taylor. It is now available on DVD courtesy of Anchor Bay Entertainment.