Horrortoberfest Day 18 – Last Shift (2014)

last-shift-poster

Time for a good old haunted house movie but this time it’s a haunted police building. Sort of like a cross between The Amityville Horror and Assault on Precinct 13. The best part of any haunted building movie is seeing exactly how far the main character will go before finally accepting that they are indeed in a haunted building. Some do it better with a slow build up with certain anomalies that could be easily explained. Others, like this one, have shit that would make any sane person immediately get the hell out right from the start and yet still have the main character be like “Oh, I must just be tired and that’s why all the chairs in this room suddenly stacked themselves the moment I looked away.”

Our story follows a rookie cop, Officer Jessica Loren, on her first night on the job. She has the seemingly boring task of watching over a soon to be shut down police station until the hazmat crew can come and dispose of all the biohazard in evidence. As the movie progresses we find out more and more about the history of the station and the sordid past that Officer Loren is also tied to. The ghosts of her family’s past are coming back to haunt her and nothing is as it seems. Can she unravel the truth of what happened here a year ago and still survive the night? No. No, probably not.

The film is odd in that it both takes a while before having any outright ghosts and things showing up but it ramps up the weird stuff from “probably just old pipes” to “every cabinet that was just closed is now open after I looked away” real quick. What’s terrible is that moment in these movies where the main character starts to do that whole “Ha ha, very funny guys. You can come out now.” in this film is like after she has straight up seen some crazy paranormal shit. It’s not like there’s just weird noises and sounds and stuff. We are talking shit appearing and disappearing, furniture moving on its own, and seeing some creepy girls with bloody bags on their heads. Even if they wanted to, nobody is that good at pranking the rookie.

What keeps this movie interesting past the point where you have yelled for her to just get the fuck out already for the tenth time is the small background information you get. You find out about her dad and how he helped bring in a group of crazy cultists that were killing girls. Then you find out how they killed themselves and that this is the one year anniversary of the death. Getting the little snippets is fun enough that you can get strung along on the jump scares and weird bag head ghosts. The effects on here are good and the whole bloody bag look is easy enough to do while still being fairly creepy looking. Also kudos to Juliana Harkavy, who plays the role of Jessica, for carrying the movie since it is almost entirely her alone in the building with only small interactions with other people.

I think the movie is well made and has enough tension to it that you can still get some scares from it. It’s nothing amazing but it’s a fun watch. I’d give it a 3.5 out of 5.

Favorite thing in the movie: The interaction with Officer Price in the middle of the movie. That was a really well done scene.

Least favorite thing: She seriously does the “You got me. You can come out now.” after seeing a room full of chairs go from spread out to stacked tightly in the middle of the room in the blink of an eye. That’s not a prank. That’s ghosts. The fuck is wrong with you?

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