Director: Agnieszka Wojtowicz-Vosloo
Stars: Christina Ricci, Justin Long, Liam Neeson
Review by Brian M. Sammons
This is a movie that pretty much slid under a lot of people’s radars despite having three somewhat marketable and recognizable actors in it. I honestly don’t know if this film ever went to the theaters or if it was a direct to DVD production. Usually when that happens it’s not a good thing, but is that the case here? Well don’t be afraid, we’ll explore this After.Life together.
The story begins with a very board, listless young lady named Anna (Ricci) who’s thoroughly bored with her teaching job, her fiancé, her sex life, and just life in general. Lucky for her then, she gets into an auto accident and winds up on the slab. But not only is this not just any slab, as it belongs to a calm, comforting, but nonetheless creepy mortician played by Liam Neeson, but she’s also not quite dead. Or is she?
The mystery and thriller part of this movie concerns Anna coming to grips with her own death as the mortician tries to ease her into her afterlife. How can he do that? Because he’s special and he tells her that only he can see and talk to dead people. Naturally Ann goes through all the stages of grief, albeit she’s grieving over her own death, but could there be more to the story than that? Well, more to it than an “I see dead people” ghost story? Perhaps, but you’ll just have to see After.Life for yourself to find out.
Anchor Bay adds a few special features to this great looking Blu-ray, but not many and nothing we haven’t seen before. There’s an audio commentary with the director and co-writer, Agnieszka; a making of featurette; and a theatrical trailer. So if you’re extra features junkie this disc might leave you a little cold, however did I mention the lots and lots of Christina Ricci nudity that’s in this film? That in its own right is a very special feature in my book.
After.Life isn’t a great film, and not one I can see myself watching over and over again, but it was a good watch and I enjoyed it. The story had some decent twists, although the major one I saw coming quite a bit before it was revealed. However all three of the main actors deliver fine performances, especially Liam Neeson as the creepy mortician.
There was only one thing about this movie that didn’t really work for me and that was a subplot with a sullen little kid that becomes a bit too emo/goth too quickly, easily, and unbelievably for my taste. Regardless of that, if you’re looking for an atmospheric thriller with possible supernatural overtones and a good dose of originality then After.Life is the flick for you.