Mauro Borrelli, who has worked in various positions on horror films such as illustrator on Dracula Untold (2014), takes the coveted director’s chair again for The Ghostmaker formerly known as Box of Shadows and co-wrote with Scott Svatos all for a tale involving a clockwork coffin designed to give time, only to collect in a timely manner. A simple story involving three college friends, going nowhere fast as possible, a love interest, and a mystical coffin, that transcends time, space and yet possess deadly consequences, while occupying both the horror and fantasy genres.
Kyle (Aaron Dean Eisenberg) a college student who works on cleaning out houses, and selling items on eBay for extra dollars, until fate connects him to a coffin, whose homeowner demands destruction, and though agreed, the dollar symbols spin in his eyes. Soon, his roommate a wheelchair bound man, Sutton (J. Walter Holland) examine it and involve their friend Platt (Jared Grey). The discovery leads to clockwork on infinite gears galore, and a mystery begins to unfold while the audience learns that Kyle living well beyond his means for his wealthy girlfriend, Julie (Liz Fenning) and has a deadly drug problem while Sutton desires Julie; too. Borrello and Svatos bring together a back story on the coffin, creator and balance the musical theory of life and death, and an original concept all for a Lionsgate release. The friends learn about the secrets, and begin to toy with the Middle Ages coffin, which allows them the ability to transcend the physical world and enter into the astral plain, breaking a crack into the world of death, while still living. They quickly learn that anything can be accomplished since no one may seen them, for a drug addict he learn vault combinations, drug locations and the other each have their own desires. Svatos’ script borrows from Flatliners (1990) when Kiefer’s, Bacon’s and Robert’s characters begin a bidding war of how to travel into the world of astral experiences, herein the battle goes become Sutton and Kyle.
The plot begins to breakdown near the end of the film, with a death taking turns with the players of the device, and using it to rehab oneself from a crippled to a forceful, stalking psychopath, though never explaining how the device allows this to happen. A plot hole most definitely, and the Kyle turns from self-centered drug addicted to a respectable person, sending drug dealer, Marcus (played extremely well by Domiziano Arcangeli a star of over 66 horror films, of which 7 are in various stages of completion – the film needed a serious villain, and it got him) to jail. Sutton and Platt lives take brutal turns for the worse, though Platt a more sinister route as if discovering the past history of the coffin actually results in a defense maneuver to protect the Ghostmaker.
Their destructive forces, result in hidden fine print issues, unleash deadly mixture, of shadows and time, for the beast that roams the darkness in search for those whose time vanished, in other words the Reaper (Greg Chandler Maness) only knows the hour and minute of those next to die, especially since shown as a Clockwork Gear Cloaked Death. The sad downside in the movie is the stunning visual that shows the college men walking about and doing various deeds, only in a brief moment does a non-showing ghostly apparition makes the preseense known, hence providing jolt to the audience. The production values had a spot on quality and gave slick style to the view, but the continuing astral projection, and waning and discouraging aspect, for an adult audience. The twists in the movie provide the much needed motivation, to progress a sticky pacing for the production, while the CGI spins wildly out-of-control.
Some have wondered why an individual would lie down in a morbid coffin, such as the Ghostmaker, knowing the destructive forces surrounding it. The answer everyone wonders is what it would be like to be invisible, the good or more likely the evil that one sought to do, without any chance of arrest or conviction. The title truly conveys everything about the film, a coffin holds a body, and the Ghostmaker creates the ghost, and keeper Death, the ultimate clockwatcher.