Suitable Flesh

October 27, 202350/1005 min
Starring
Heather Graham, Judah Lewis, Barbara Crampton
Written by
H.P. Lovecraft ( based on a story by), Dennis Paoli
Directed by
Joe Lynch
Run Time
1h 40min
Release Date
October 27th, 2023
Overall Score
Rating Summary

        There was a time when if you told an H.P. Lovecraft story on the big screen, you would probably see the name Stuart Gordon attached to it. Having brought Re-Animator, From Beyond, and Dagon to the screen, he had a love for the material, and it showed in his movies. Sadly, Stuart passed away in 2020, but writer Dennis Paoli, who wrote all of those adaptations, has continued with his love of Lovecraft and has teamed up with director Joe Lynch for a movie that Gordon would surely approve of.

Dr. Elizabeth Derby (Heather Graham) is a psychiatrist who has a pretty nice life and a successful practice, but a new patient is about to change all of that. That patient’s name is Asa (Judah Lewis), who bursts in on a session, begging Dr. Derby to help him with an urgent matter. It involves his father, Ephriam (Brice Davison), who is, how you say, quite the character. Dr. Derby is fascinated with Asa, not because of his father, but because he seems to suffer from some personality disorders. It is for that reason she makes a house call to Asa, shedding some light on the situation in which she discovers there might be something dark and supernatural at play.

If you are familiar with Gordon’s films, you would know they can get a little crazy. Suitable Flesh spends its first hour establishing its characters and setting up its story. It is during that time that you start to hope for it to go a little off its rails, but it stays safe and doesn’t go where you hope it does. With that said, the film is a little inconsistent when it comes to tone, as Lynch never really seems to settle on one. That, though, only hurts the film in a minor way because whatever it lacks in the first hour, it surely makes up for in the final act. The cast is fine, but standing out is Graham, who gets to play a couple of characters, and Barbara Crampton, who always steals the show because she is Barbara Crampton. It is those two that make Suitable Flesh more than suitable when it comes to being a fun horror flick.

While not perfect, Suitable Flesh’s final act is where its charm lies, as things get a little crazy and wild in a way anyone who has seen a Dennis Paoli movie would expect. It’s in that chaos that the movie thrives, it only makes you wish there was more of it. This, like most horror movies, is better seen with a crowd, as it is a lot more engaging that way. Ultimately, Suitable Flesh will please both Gordon and Lovecraft fans alike, as it delivers just the right amount of craziness, which is just the way we like it.

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