Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Ghost From the Machine / Phasma Ex Machina (DVD Review)

DVD Review of the techno-paranormal drama Ghost From the Machine / Phasma Ex Machina.

Image: Courtesy of Alliance Films
Legal Line © 2011 Screen Media Films. All Rights Reserved. Distributed exclusively in Canada by Alliance Films. All Rights Reserved

Writer/Dir: Matt Osterman - feature film directorial debut
Cast: Sasha Andreev, Matthew Feeney, Max Hauser, Emily Fradenburgh, Michelle Bergh, Lynette Biunno
USA, 2010

Reason to see: Techno-paranormal + festival buzz = hell yes!

I love finding new subgenres, and Ghost From the Machine / Phasma Ex Machina created just that with a techno-paranormal emotional drama. Yep, that was certainly enough to get me interest in this film and was pretty much all I knew going in. Actually all I knew going in was the techno-paranormal, and I thought it might be more of a horror film but it really is a sensitive drama about family and loss. Who knew? It was refreshing to see but I think it's good to know it's more of an emotional pull that a scare-you kind of film, although there certainly are unnerving ideas and creeping situations. It's also totally got the indie vibe running right through it which I loved from the lo-fi technology perspective as well as the ideas over effects. But was the hidden treat is here is a really interesting idea and surprizingly good and very naturalistic acting from the cast. It also has a bit of a quirky sense to it at times and might raise a few eyebrows, but I loved that it really goes for it and holds true to a vision that boarders on obsession for reunification even when holding true can breach the final walls still standing.

It's a beautiful story of love, family and persistence against the odds and opinions of accepted ideas and faiths. Gutsy and touching, it's worth a look for paranormal fans everywhere.

DVD Extras:
  • Ghost Hunt (11 minutes) paranormal investigation with of Mounds Theatre in St. Paul Minnesota with cast and crew including writer/director Matt Osterman, actors Sasha Andreev & Matthew Feeney, producer Jennifer Kramer as well as paranormal investigator John Savage, Mounds Theatre Manager Reann Ruth discussing the paranormal activity in the theatre, views and experiences with the paranormal in general.
  • Script to Screen (3 minutes) film clips, behind the scenes and interviews with writer/director Matt Osterman, actors Sasha Andreev & Matthew Feeney, producer Jennifer Kramer on the story, the themes of regret & remorse, the characters & their motivations and the emotional thruths of the story.
Ghost From the Machine is available as of July 26, 2011 on DVD. Check it out over at &

Shannon's Overall View:
I enjoyed it
I'd watch it again
I'd recommend it to fans of indie films & the paranormal

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© Shannon Ridler, 2011

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