Grindstone Road

 (109)1 h 33 min2008X-Ray13+
The Sloan's young son Daniel has been in coma for an extended period of time following a car accident. Hannah, who was driving at the time of the accident, is suffering a great deal of guilt and depression. Shortly after moving into a newly purchased house, strange occurrences begin to happen. Is Hannah losing her mind, or are there supernatural forces at work?
Melanie Orr
Fairuza BalkGreg BrykWalter Learning
English [CC]
Audio languages
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3.6 out of 5 stars

109 global ratings

  1. 29% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 33% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 17% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 10% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 11% of reviews have 1 stars

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Top reviews from the United States

Linda BeeReviewed in the United States on April 22, 2018
4.0 out of 5 starsDefinitely several cuts above average
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This film is surprisingly good. I was expecting another low-grade horror flick with bad acting, poor writing and all the other deficiencies usually seen in so many of these free w/Amazon Prime indie horror movies. Imagine my surprise and delight to have actually come upon one with very decent acting all around, truly interesting storyline, and direction which kept the pace moving near perfectly. The lead actress is very good. At the beginning, I didn't think she would shine one way or another--I was just content to see a decent actress for once. But as the film progressed, I became aware that she was actually very, very good. I also must praise the old couple, esp. the wife. They were able to pull off that pivotal scene, which could so easily have turned comedic. But that cold expression on the old woman's face chilled all humor out of it.

Another thing I liked was that the writing and dialog had a really natural feel to it. Nobody said or did anything out of character; no bone-headed decisions or exhibitions of cluelessness. Very refreshing. There is virtually no gore or sex in this film, which only shows that a good moviemaker does not need to rely on these things to maintain tension or interest. I can definitely recommend this film and am going to keep an eye out for any others produced by members of the crew responsible for this one.
18 people found this helpful
Michael K. EidsonReviewed in the United States on June 2, 2018
4.0 out of 5 starsFairuza Balk does not disappoint
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I enjoyed this film. I was in the mood to watch something I hadn't seen before featuring Fairuza Balk, and chose this movie to watch. Her performance in Grindstone Road was a bit different from her performance in [[ASIN:B000MQ7B0O The Craft]], but as in The Craft, for me, she carried the show. Still, everyone else in Grindstone Road gave fantastic performances, especially the older couple. I enjoyed the twist near the end, and felt the writing was better here than for many other movies produced in this genre. As for what could have been better, I felt the makeup for the ghost boy was over the top, almost comical in some scenes, which wasn't the intended effect, I believe. The movie felt slow in places, perhaps belaboring certain points. But the good outweighed the bad for me, and all in all, I'm glad to have seen Grindstone Road.
8 people found this helpful
M.A. KleenReviewed in the United States on October 7, 2017
1.0 out of 5 starsDoesn’t even rise to the level of a made-for-TV movie
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A young couple moves into an old farmhouse, only to experience a series of strange events. Is the ghost of a missing child reaching out for help from beyond the grave? In capable hands, Grindstone Road (2008), written by Paul Germann and directed by Melanie Orr, had the potential to be an entertaining (if not very original) horror film. Unfortunately, it doesn’t even rise to the level of a made-for-TV movie.

Melanie Orr is a script supervisor (oversees a film’s continuity) who has directed episodes for a number of television shows. Grindstone Road was her sophomore effort. Paul Germann is a sound effects editor who has written a grand total of one film. Grindstone Road must have been so bad he never got another script optioned. It was like he had a weird dream and decided to make a movie out of it.

Somehow they tricked Fairuza Balk into starring in their cliched and mediocre Canadian horror film. Balk appeared in some popular movies in the ’90s, including The Craft (1996), American History X (1998), and The Waterboy (1998), then dropped off the public’s radar. She always embraced “alternative” roles, and wears a goth-ish outfit for one scene in this movie, but otherwise plays a conventional housewife. That’s like asking Jackson Pollock to paint an idyllic country cottage. It’s just not right.

As bad as Grindstone Road is, at least it has an interesting story. Wracked with guilt over a car accident that left her son Daniel (Felix Pennell) in a deep coma, Hannah (Fairuza Balk) begins having strange experiences in her new home. Her husband, Graham (Greg Bryk), is oblivious and blames the antidepressants she takes to help ease the pain. Their neighbors, an elderly couple named Ted (Walter Learning) and Linda (Joan Gregson), alert them to the possibility their house is haunted.

Hannah discovers a young boy, also named Daniel (Dylan Authors), disappeared while living in the house and may have been abused by his parents. John Dodson (Zachary Bennett), a mysterious man who only Hannah can see, serves as a red herring to deflect attention from the real villains. Since there are only a handful of characters, you can probably guess who they are. It was refreshing to see elderly antagonists, although the religious motivation behind their crimes is eye-rolling.

With a budget of $1.5 million, there’s really no excuse for the film to be this bad. Daniel’s character looks like they slapped flour and black lipstick on his face. There are plenty of examples of decent horror movies with ghosts that look like regular people. They could have used context clues, lighting, or even an interesting costume to indicate he was a ghost, anything but this awful makeup. John Dodson is also a ghost, but goes makeup-free. I guess that’s to trick the audience into thinking he’s a living, breathing character.

There is one captivating scene in which Hannah struggles to get out of a noose while hanging from the basement rafter. It looks real and it looks like Fairuza Balk did the scene herself.

Filmmakers treat the horror genre as an excuse to make low quality films, and this check-the-box ghost story is no exception. Despite veteran leads (Greg Bryk also appeared in A History of Violence, Shoot ‘Em Up, and a number of TV shows), Grindstone Road is the Halloween equivalent of a Hallmark Channel Christmas story. It currently has an 18 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes, and you can watch it for free on YouTube.
6 people found this helpful
SharpReviewed in the United States on August 26, 2017
5.0 out of 5 starsGrindstone Road
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Well-written storyline about a woman's past & present. There were unexpected twists making a mother look like she's insane, in her grief for her comatose eleven-year-old son. She & her doctor/husband move into a house that's haunted & the paranormal forces take over. Another eleven-year-old boy, the mother was friends with in youth, keeps appearing & speaking with her, but he's dead. She unravels the mystery that took his life amid her husband's over-medicating her to ease her "anxiety" from her grief. This story was well-done, with great acting all around, amid a nice country setting, The ending was not expected but shocking. Somehow I knew~
4 people found this helpful
CraftsbyCarlaReviewed in the United States on October 15, 2017
5.0 out of 5 starsWriter Paul Germann came up with a brilliant story. This movie will keep you captivated from ...
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Writer Paul Germann came up with a brilliant story. This movie will keep you captivated from beginning to end. It's the kind of "edge of your seat" movie that has a plot which keeps you enticed to never miss one second of the plot. Such a wonderful mix of the paranormal, sadness, deceit and disbelief on the part of a husband and his post traumatic anxious wife. I highly recommend this movie to anyone who believes that a soul cannot cross over until the mystery of his death has delivered him. Excellent acting, direction and most importantly writing.
2 people found this helpful
Kira S.Reviewed in the United States on February 11, 2021
3.0 out of 5 starsGrindstone Road
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Another movie I watched just to see Fairuza Balk. As usual, she did a great job. The story was fair. It wandered all over the place and the clues, which should have slowly led the main character to the truth, were scattered and made no sense until the culprits were confronted. There was a twist at the end which I did not see coming and really kind of fell flat. It should have been emphasized more as a main plot point. All in all, a mixed bag. If you are a Fairuza Balk (The Craft, original) fan, by all means watch it. Otherwise...your choice. I would give it an extra half star for her performance if I could.
DeadManWalkingReviewed in the United States on September 3, 2017
2.0 out of 5 starsfairly boring
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This ones not just slow in the beginning, but slow throughout. This really plays out as more of a drama than horror, and I just found it boring to watch. The acting and everything was good enough, but the story was just slow and uninteresting for me. This might be okay to have on while taking a Sunday afternoon nap, but I really can't recommend it to anyone. Guide=minor foul language, no nudity and no gore.
3 people found this helpful
EldweenaReviewed in the United States on January 10, 2020
4.0 out of 5 starsPredictable but entertaining
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Fairuza Balk is a phenomenal actress. She made the movie worth watching. The guy who played her husband was a really terrible actor. There's a scene where he's being attacked and choked and his facial expression doesn't even change. LOL! The plot was hardly original but it was still fun to follow along. The special effects (sound and makeup) were not good but it was easy to look past that and just enjoy. The settings were beautiful (the old houses, the woods). I enjoyed it. I would watch it again.
One person found this helpful
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