Urban Cinefile
"Phar Lap was the ultimate loser - adored and even pickled in formaldehyde once good and dead and murdered."  -The Bitch, in Urban Cinefile, about Australia's love of losers
 The World of Film in Australia - on the Internet Updated Tuesday September 15, 2020 

Printable page PRINTABLE PAGE



SYNOPSIS: Shawn (Dominic Rians), an automotive designer, enjoys an idyllic life with his new wife Jasmine (Serinda Swan) until it is interrupted by a cryptic message, warning of imminent danger and a curse that has afflicted his family for generations. Having lost his parents as a child, Shawn doesn't believe this unsettling revelation .... until strange things start to happen. Unable to explain the threats and fearing for his life, Shawn turns to Gabriel (Ray Park) and Father Westhoff (William Atherton), a mysterious duo claiming to have answers. With their help, and the aid of Ali (Faran Tahir), a shackled mental patient, Shawn discovers that there is far more to this world than he ever imagined. These revelations set Shawn on a collision course with the unknown, and he alone must find the strength protect his family and confront the ancient evil that is hunting them.

Review by Andrew L. Urban:
In the beginning three were created: man - made of clay; angels - made of light; the third, called the jinn - made of fire. It's a sect of the last, bitterly jealous of man's supremacy over the earth, have waited in the wings for the moment to strike at man.... And this is that time. It's not the most original premise for a spook story, but it's a dandy as escapism, and Ajmal Zaheer Ahmad puts all his cinematic skills to good use as he delivers the spookiness. (He also makes a brief appearance [in the style of M. Night Shyamalan] as the hero's father on video.)

Supernatural thrillers come with conventions, of course, and they are in evidence here, to give us the comfort of knowing where we are in the cinematic universe. Lighting, sound, score and design all mesh in seamless thriller harmony, and the cast is carefully chosen.

There is Dominic Rains as Shawn (or Shan as the mysterious message that starts things off calls him), the young motor vehicle designer with a beautiful young wife, beautifully played by Serinda Swan; William Athertonwith his veteran's screen authority as Father Westhoff; Ray Park as Gabriel, unsubtle in name but effective in performance; Faran Tahir, totally committed to his role as a chained mental patient (in a swanky metal clinic with a derelict section) with a secret.

Visual effects are important and used to great... er... effect, while the editing delivers dynamic pacing. Of course, supernatural thrillers only work if you drop your cynicism and skepticism, overlooking the hoooey that drives their stories. But at least Jinn is a committed film, never self referential or making spooky spoofy. Just don't expect naturalism; it's supernatural, after all, and frilled with Asian and Indian influences. A pumped up story that is used to dress the effects and scares of the filmmaker's imagination.

It's not my kinda film, but - some silliness aside - it does what the filmmakers set out to do.

Email this article

Favourable: 0
Unfavourable: 0
Mixed: 1

(US, 2014)

CAST: Dominic Rains, Serinda Swan, Ray Park, Faran Tahir, William Atherton, Amber Whelan, Walter Phelan, Ajmal Zaheer Ahmad

PRODUCER: Benjamin Dresser

DIRECTOR: Ajmal Zaheer Ahmad

SCRIPT: Ajmal Zaheer Ahmad


EDITOR: Ajmal Zaheer Ahmad, Justin Hynous

MUSIC: Noah Sorota

PRODUCTION DESIGN: Chris Anthony Miller

RUNNING TIME: 97 minutes



DVD DISTRIBUTOR: Third Millenium Entertainment

DVD RELEASE: April 16, 2015

Urban Cinefile 1997 - 2020