"Reel Reviews: ‘Separation’ had the chance to be awesome and failed miserably" by: Jessica Shepard

   As someone who watches a lot of horror movies, it’s easy enough to see when something’s left it’s best scares in the trailer and brings no substance in the rest of the film.
   “Separation” managed to accomplish that within the first 15 minutes of the film.
   After all, I make it a habit to check out trailers for movies more often as of late so that I don’t have to direct you towards something terrible.
   Sadly, this flick isn’t even worth renting on Redbox or looking to stream anywhere.
   Which is really depressing since the trailer showed such promise and I’m always down for the good old possessed/evil toy tropes like “Chucky” (1988) or 2014’s “Annabelle.”
   The film stars Rupert Friend, Violet McGraw, Madeline Brewer, Mamie Gummer, Brian Cox, Eric Miller, and Simon Quarterman.
   Separation is rated R for language, some violence, and brief drug use and clocks in at one hour and 47 minutes long.
   Unfortunately, 8-year-old Jenny (McGraw) is constantly caught in the middle of the feuding between her lawyer mother Maggie (Gummer) and artist father Jeff (Friend).
   She leads a lonely but imaginative life, surrounded by puppets called “Grisly Kin,” which are based on the comics her parents created together.
   However, Jeff has been out of work for years and perpetuates his tragic artist persona since Maggie went back to being a lawyer for her father (Cox).
   One day Jeff is discussing comics with babysitter Samantha (Brewer) instead of searching for a job, paying bills, or being anything resembling an adult and Jenny has an accident in the attic.
   The accident leads to Maggie taking Jenny to the hospital and filing for divorce; the ensuing custody battle just exacerbates things.
   Jeff’s out of touch with reality still and takes Jenny to the wrong coffee shop to meet her mother and runs into Connor Gibbons (Miller), an old friend from college who remembers his comics.
   Jeff reconnects and Connor offers to show him around his comic label and perhaps get him started on a new project.
   Maggie calls to berate Jeff for being at the wrong shop and the pair argue with Maggie wearing Jeff down to sign the divorce paperwork naming her as the sole custodian of Jenny.
   However, when Jeff is poised to sign over his parental rights, Maggie is tragically killed in a hit-and-run that leaves Jeff and Jenny try to piece together a new life.
   But when Maggie’s father sues for custody, and babysitter Samantha tries to be the new woman of the house, life in their Brooklyn townhome takes a dark turn.
   Jenny gets a new imaginary friend and Jeff starts hallucinating his puppets coming back to life while struggling for a new job.
   Connor hires Jeff at an entry-level inking position, but his sketches soon catch the eye of Alan Ross (Quarterman), who offers him a new project to work on exploring “darkness.”
   It leads Jeff down a path that makes him feel like he’s losing touch with reality and himself.
   But, even then, it’s not worthy of being termed a horror movie aside from the family drama that seems never-ending.

Rate this article: 
No votes yet