A doctor gets more than what he bargains for in this supernatural thriller featuring some very familiar faces.
James “Doc” McCune is a local physician who has been summoned by his uncle Matthew to come to a small remote town in Arkansas in the 19th-Century. There, he meets Douglas, who welcomes him into town. Doc meets some of the other locals, including bar owner Torb, innkeeper Lucille, the headstrong Annie and her mute brother William to name a few. Doc is warned to stay indoors at night because something mysterious happens at night, and it involves ghosts.
As Doc discovers the mysteries surrounding the ghosts, he soon finds some allies in Annie and Douglas as the trio soon learn that things may not be as they seem. When Matthew confronts Doc on multiple occasions, Doc soon learns that Matthew has influenced and convinced the townsfolk about the ghosts. When Doc learns the town has a reserve protected by the ghosts, those close to him soon begin to meet some dire consequences. Can Doc be able to solve the mystery before it’s too late or will he fall prey to the town’s ghosts?
From the duo of Matt Glass and Jordan Wayne Long (who co-wrote the film with wife and co-star Tara Perry) comes this feature film adaptation of a 2016 short ghost film. This really well-made film brings back both Perry and lead Thomas Hobson in the role of Doc, who comes to a Arkansas small town to discover both his uncle holds some sort of power within the town, a very interesting thing considering that during this period, African-Americans were more known for slavery and not ones to really hold power positions. So this is a welcome change in terms of historical value.
Hobson does a great job as he finds himself going from helping the local town folk with ailments to attempting to solve the mystery of the ghosts. However, he is not alone and gets help from some unlikely sources. David Arquette’s Douglas comes off as a likable fellow who welcomes Doc and even tells him the story of the ghosts who only appear at night. Tara Perry gets to play a strong character in sharpshooter Annie, who doesn’t take anything from anyone. While Angela Bettis’ Lucille seems like the concerned parent type to Doc, it’s Annie who gets to be the strong one and she gets help from Joseph Ruud, aka former WWE superstar Erick Rowan, as her massive mute brother William. Tim Blake Nelson is also wonderful as Irish bar owner Torb, who gets to sing a song in a full Irish accent. What a fun little gem of a performance.
Phil Morris, best known for his role as lawyer Jackie Chiles on Seinfeld, pulls off an impressive and at times, shocking performance as Matthew, Doc’s uncle who plays the power card in town. He also has stumbled upon a way to get rich and it somehow it connects to the ghosts who arrive in town. The question is how does Matthew have influence in the town and does he have some sort of influence on the ghosts? The answer lies in the final act of the film.
Ghosts of the Ozarks is a wild supernatural ride of a Western that has some nice twists and turns mixed in with some excellent performances among the cast. The final act brings some nice surprises and comes off as a film worth checking out.
WFG RATING: B+
XYZ Films presents a HCT Media production. Directors: Matt Glass and Jordan Wayne Long. Producers: Tara Perry, Jordan Wayne Long, David Arquette, Matt Glass, Michael May, and Christina McLarty Arquette. Writers: Sean Anthony Davis, Tara Perry, and Jordan Wayne Long. Cinematography: Jordan Wayne Long and Matt Glass. Editing: Ryan C. Fill.
Cast: Thomas Hobson, Tara Perry, Angela Bettis, David Arquette, Phil Morris, Tim Blake Nelson, Joseph Ruud, David Aaron Baker, Neva Howell, Brandon Gibson, Scott Dean.
The film will be coming out in select theaters, On Demand, and Digital on February 4, 2022.