The Viewing

The Viewing ★★

Guillermo del Toro's Cabinet of Curiosities - Season 1 - Episode 7

"Money is irrelevant. It's only the pursuit of my tastes, and there's no accounting for taste."

The year is 1979. Four successful people, a novelist, an astrophysicist, a psychic, and a music producer are picked up in a dark parking garage. They've all been invited to The Sandpiper House by Mr. Lassiter, an extremely wealthy recluse who happens to be a collector of only the most illusive objects. All of their talents lend to a cause that will reveal itself after he shows them this mysterious item.

The Viewing is directed by Panos Cosmatos, son of fellow director George P. Cosmatos, and the man behind both the excellent Nicholas Cage madness project Mandy and the underwhelming to me but highly praised otherwise, Beyond the Black Rainbow. His track record with me is roughly 50/50 so let's see how this one shakes out.

One thing I tend to like about his work is the music he uses. Heavy synth and synthwave. In this case, a decent chunk of the soundtrack feels like it was made during the pinnacle of 1980s synth. Cosmatos and Stranger Things are as close as it gets nowadays and I love it. The rest of the soundtrack I can do without as well as the use of dark and light. I think that is one of the things that people love most about his work, but I'm not onboard. Almost the entire film is dark with a golden hued light. If you're a gamer that has played the latest Dues Ex games you'll know exactly what I mean, though I think Eidos did it better with that series.

Who doesn't love Peter Weller? The former Robocop does a great job filling the shoes of an old, wealthy, eccentric dude. I would even describe his performance as very Lance Hendrikson like. That's basically the end as far as the positives are concerned. Out of a run time of damn near sixty minutes, the first forty are duller than dull. It's also plagued by bad CGI FX and the final reveal doesn't even look good. I understand that I am in the minority on this but The Viewing is just another Cosmatos letdown. It's a long boring conversation between uninteresting people which drags ass to a reveal that sucks. By far the worst episode in Neflix's horror anthology series, Guillermo del Toro's Cabinet of Curiosities.

Track record adjusted to 25/75.

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