When I first heard the premise of the new horror-thriller BODY CAM I thought, “Okay this is enough of a draw for me to watch,” since I don’t enjoy paranormal type scares as much as when I was younger. But a story of revenge for some wronged action by crooked cops AND Mary J. Blige is in the lead? Yep, I’m biting, let’s watch it!
Yet, although current events and the high focus on police brutality makes the premise of the film right on time, “Body Cam” ends up as a great story concept that’s poorly executed.
Here’s the synopsis: When a routine traffic stop results in the unexplained, grisly death of her colleague, a cop (Mary J. Blige) realizes footage of the incident will play for her eyes only. As the attacks mount, she races to understand the supernatural force behind them.
Sounds intriguing right? Unfortunately, the film starts off strong – and I wondered if I’d bitten off more than I could chew with the aforementioned death – but loses its fright quotient with the increasing death count, becoming less haunting as Renee (Blige) pieces together the supernatural mystery.
It’s unfortunate, because the movie has a solid cast that includes David Zayas (Gotham, Annie) and an underused Anika Noni Rose (Everything, Everything, Dreamgirls).
I was disappointed also that Blige wasn’t given a better opportunity to display her acting chops, for which she received critical acclaim in 2017’s “Mudbound,” as she spent most of the movie delivering the same note.
And if you’re anything like me, you’ll probably spend an excessive amount of time yelling at the screen for all the wrong reasons – since Renee spends a lot of time breaking standard procedure, clearly ignoring hints of paranormal activity and contaminating crime scenes! In one scene in particular, I was just plain ‘ole sick of Renee and her flashlight (you’ll see it).
A supernatural story, with a social justice theme, “Body Cam” overreaches and loses sight of the haunt it so strongly starts. I rate the film 2 out of 5 on the MMTrometer. But, the one thing I know about horror fans is that y’all can be very forgiving, so I’d love to hear those thoughts if you view this one!
BODY CAM is available now on Digital and will be available On Demand June 2 from Paramount Home Entertainment, with the DVD arriving on July 14.
Until next thought, Thomasena