Pin. Film Review


Director: Sandor Stern   

Screenplay: Sandor Stern (based on the novel by Andrew Neiderman)

Starring: David Hewlett, Cynthia Preston, Terry O’Quinn

Certificate: 15   

Running Time: 98 mins  

Format: DVD

Reviewed by Guy Adams

I’ve met a number of Canadians and, judging by my not at all scientific study, they’re all mad. Mad in a charming, fascinating and exciting way. I’m sure this is not an accurate opinion, there must be great swathes of conventional folk strutting around that mammoth country, being all normal, I have just yet to meet them.

Whoever these completely sane Canadians are they’ve clearly had nothing to do with the making of this film. They left that to Canadians that fit my absurd stereotype. The mad ones. The ones that have a way about them that is charming and yet baffling in equal measure.

PIN is the story of an anatomically correct dummy (yes, it does, with a nurse if you must know) used by The Actor Everyone Knows From Lost Formally Known As Terry O’Quinn to handle awkward discussions with his children.

TAEKFLFKATO plays a doctor, so utterly lacking in empathy or social interaction skills that he performs a weird ventriloquism act with the dummy so that ‘Pin’ (short for Pinocchio) can hand all the awkward conversations he may need to have with his children. Such as sexual education. Because learning about penises and vaginas is so much more reassuring when it’s told to you by an inanimate, skinless dummy asking you to stare at its rubber cock.

Unsurprisingly, the children grow up to have issues. Particularly Leon, played by David Hewlett, who even as he becomes an adult, refuses to accept the dummy, his only childhood friend isn’t real. He looks to him for advice on all subjects, most especially the sexual conduct of his sister and the suitability of her new boyfriend.

You can see where this is going, I’m sure. A salutary lesson to parents everywhere.

It’s a bizarre little picture because despite the fact that it’s shot like a horrendous, eighties TV movie with not an ounce of aesthetic charm it still works. Part of the success must lie at the nutty feet of David Hewlett whose performance as Leon is the glue that holds the whole thing together.

The movie is strange, compelling, absurdly straight-faced and creepy. Well worth picking up.

As part of Arrow’s ARROWDROME label it’s light on extras, just a theatrical trailer and a nice booklet, but it’s also only seven quid if bought direct from their online store so don’t complain or Pin will consider you ‘ungrateful and rude’ and send Leon round to sort you out.

About Phil Lunt (799 Articles)
Hailing from the rain-sodden, North Western wastelands of England, Phil has dabbled in many an arcane vocation. From rock-star to conveyor-belt scraper at a bread factory, 'Dairy Logistics Technician' to world's worst waiter. He's currently a freelance designer, actor, sometime writer/editor and Chair of the British Fantasy Society. He is on the Global Frequency and is still considering becoming an astronaut when he grows up.