Seconds Apart is a 2011 American independent horror film released by After Dark Films known for distributing independent horror movies as well as showcasing them in film festivals. Seconds Apart was released direct to DVD and Blu-ray.
Seconds Apart tells the story of Seth and Jonah, a pair of high school twins who possess the terrifying ability of telekinesis. It is already apparent in the first few minutes of the film that these twins are evil. They use their ability to manipulate, control and kill just about anyone for different and personal reasons. Eventually, the police suspect foul play and start investigating. At about the same time, a new girl enters their school and this causes a rift between the twins which ends in a rather satisfying conclusion.
I have a soft spot for independently made horror movies. A lot of them have surprised me in their brilliance and originality as well as in execution. A lot still try to reuse overly done to death cliches but they still manage to produce effective scares. Seconds Apart is a mixed bag. The pacing is inconsistent with a middle part that feels so boring with some lazy storytelling and editing. The first 20 minutes or so of the film meanwhile grabs your attention as we’re introduced to the characters and their manipulative ways. The final act is quite predictable with the usual showdown between the twins but it ends quite nicely and left me with a feeling of satisfaction. There’s also a twist that I didn’t see coming and which actually surprised me but it’s awkwardly lacking in impact and feels contrived. There is some good direction here despite the inconsistencies and After Dark Films have managed to create a film that stands as one of their best.
Seconds Apart had the potential for good storytelling. Twins are rarely explored in horror films, and with the proliferation of ‘white ladies’ from Japanese film remakes out there, this is a welcome sight. Unfortunately though, the screenplay is lacking in depth which didn’t quite translate well in the direction. What surprised me though is the above average and generally good acting. The twins played by ACTUAL twins, Edmund and Gary Entin deliver their roles well with unspeakable menace. It’s good to see real twins in films rather than using body doubles, look-alikes, and camera tricks. Orlando Jones plays the detective investigating these cases who has a serious backstory of his own. I was more surprised by his performance considering that I remember him as the quirky guy in several comedy movies (Evolution) and I didn’t expect him to play dramatic parts that well. The cinematography and music are nothing special and not really memorable as expected of After Dark Films who can’t seem to produce well photographed films. Despite that, the film still looks good and the subdued colors make for a dark and moody atmosphere.
Horror films nowadays tend to be remakes of Asian or non-english films. And even if Hollywood manages to produce something original, the actual film tends to rely on cliches, and cheap shock techniques to scare the viewers making it wholly unoriginal. Seconds Apart relies on such cliches and techniques but there is something still original in here. You will find the middle part a chore to watch but the first and last acts are riveting and ultimately satisfying. Simply put, Seconds Apart is a cut above the cookie cutter crap Hollywood has been spewing out lately. It’s just sad this won’t be getting a wide release and will eventually be buried under the stacks of me-too vampire and werewolf films which seems to be a hit among the hormonally charged teens out there.
So.. I sort of recommend this film if you’re in the mood to be scared or watch twins creep you out.