Pin (1988)
By: J.R. McNamara on September 16, 2011  | 
In2Film (UK) | Region 2, PAL | 1.78:1 (16:9 enhanced) | English DD 2.0 | 100 minutes (Full Specs)
The Movie
Cover Art
Director: Sandor Stern
Starring: David Hewlett, Cyndy Preston, Terry O'Quinn, Bronwen Mantel, John Ferguson
Screenplay: Sandor Stern
Country: Canada
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You know those films that sit in the recesses of your brain that you have only seen once, but they have profound impact on your memory? Well for me, Pin was one of those. I had fond memories of this film creeping me out, and I also remembered it contianing some solid performances, especially from genre stalwart, and everyone's Stepfather, Terry O'Quinn along with David Hewlett, who is one of those 'where do I know that guy from, he's great' actors!

Pin is based on the novel by Andrew Neiderman, who also wrote the novel that the film The Devil's Advocate is based on. and was scripted and directed by Sandor Stern, who wrote the screenplay for the original Amityville Horror and has really only directed made for TV movies and episodes of TV shows, outside of this film.

Pin tells the story of siblings Leon (played as a child by Leon Tierney, as a young teen by Steven Bednarsky, and eventually by the aforementioned David Hewlett) and Ursula (played as a child by Michelle Anderson, as a young teen  by Katie Shingler, and eventually by the Cyndy Preston) and their parents, the strict Doctor (Terry O-Quinn) and obsessive compulsive Mrs Linden (Bronwen Mantel). As children, they are taught about life from a life-sized, anatomically correct dummy known as Pinocchio (nicknamed Pin) who speaks via the good Doctor's ventriloquism. Unfortunately, Leon isn't as canny as his sister, and he believes that Pin is really real, and a slight psychosis begins to develop that after mother and father die in a tragic car accident, turns into full-blown schizophrenia, one personality being his own, and the other, that of Pin.

So Leon and Ursula are left alone (after the demise of a friendly Aunt due to a heart attack brought on by a nocturnal visit by Pin) and Leon's mental state fragments even more as he realises that Ursula may not be there for him forever…

So the question bears to ask: after all those years, did Pin disappoint? No, it did not. My adult brain appreciates what my younger mind enjoyed, even though I now realise that it is not brilliantly directed, but adequately, and all the acting isn't spectacular. Sure, Hewlett and O'Quinn are perfect, but some of the other characters are perfunctory, and nothing more.

Essentially the film is nothing more than a riff on Psycho, with the dead mother (oh sorry, was that a spoiler?) being replaced by a dummy, though it is an enjoyable riff.
Pin is presented in 16x9 anamorphic widescreen, and for the most part is a pretty good presentation. There are occasional points where the image becomes slightly pixelated, but in general the image is OK.
The audio is presented in plain old 2.0, but it isn't a smash boom bang film anyway, so it is appropriate, and besides, it sounds just fine.
Extra Features
The only extras on this disc are trailers for other Metrodome releases: Headspace, Chopper, Dance with the Devil and Midnight Movies.
The Verdict
Memory served me well on this one, and I still enjoyed this film as much as I did 20 odd years ago. Not for the gore-loving bloodhound, but instead for those who appreciate a methodical, carefully crafted psychodrama.
Movie Score
Disc Score
Overall Score

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