5ive Girls (2006)

You just have to appreciate a horror movie that asks you to take it seriously, all the while having an opening theme song of techno pop set to Ron Perlman’s voice quoting bible passages. That’s new. “5ive Girls” is another religious themed supernatural low budget fest that really attempts to think of itself as a sequel of “The Craft.” And trust me if you’ve seen the aforementioned title, then you really have no obligation to see this. Alex just moved into town with her father, and is forced to attend a local reformatory that takes in wayward girls. Alex, of course, possesses telekinesis, and is really disobedient and sure enough, she finds friends in the individuals reform school girls who all discover they serve a higher purpose. They are apparently the Supernatural friends, five girls who possess unique abilities, including Alex who is pretty much Carrie White but hotter. Fans of “Charmed” and the Fairuza Balk vehicle will definitely find interest in this thriller, as it basically really takes a great premise and does nothing really exciting with it.

Sonoda’s “5ive Girls” isn’t an awful movie by any standards, but the attempts at murk and atmosphere pretty much sap every bit of energy and pacing from the story and performances. There are your usual clichés including a sympathetic priest, a monstrous head mistress, lesbian subtext, the usual arguments between the female students, and the constant flashing of the pentagram. “5ive Girls” is such a run of the mill supernatural film that the concept never really garnered any interest my way. The characters are all so interchangeable and forgettable. One can walk through walls, one can heal through touch and yet I really couldn’t point out which girl had which power if you asked me to. The sad fact is that the film really sells itself as a hip Gothic parade of black magic and evil and yet has the lagging pace of “Whispering Corridors.”

Sonoda’s direction really doesn’t add much to the lagging proceedings in the end, and in spite of all the attempts to spin the formula, this story has been done and much better. In a reform school of apparently only five girls, they do nothing but yap back and forth with no real substance or interesting exchanges, and the visions continue just to remind us that we’re watching a horror film. We already know who the demonic entity challenging them is, and we’re well aware that the girl power message will strive to defeat the demon in the end; “5ive Girls” holds no surprises, and is just flat out dull. Sonoda’s supernatural horror flick would be a lot of fun if it wasn’t so boring, rehashed, and cliché. “5ive Girls” has a great concept to it, with some good names behind it, but it just fails to muster anything memorable or entertaining from the groundwork it lays down before us.