Before going into the plot summary and my review, I should first give you a “suspension of disbelief” warning. Most movies require it to a certain extent, but gory thrillers tend to need more than other flicks.
In Pathology, you are supposed to be okay with the idea of a group of borderline genius doctors committing murders for fun while seducing a more rational, seemingly nicer doctor into their games. If you are good, let’s move on.
And disregard the horror tag on IMDB. There’s nothing scary about the film. It’s, however, bloody, twisted and disturbing. But of course an R-rating has its limits (as opposed to NC-17 or unrated), so if you can handle a lot of blood and some autopsy scenes, you should be fine. (I was less freaked by this film’s gore than Tarantino’s typical blood baths, just to give you an idea.)
Pathology Plot Summary
Smart and seemingly strait-laced Ted Grey (Milo Ventimiglia) joins a group of brilliant yet arrogant pathologists who seem to dislike him at an instant. But soon, their leader Dr. Gallo (Michael Weston) takes an interest in Grey as Grey is intrigued by this tight, weird and generally obnoxious group. As he spends more time with Gallo, he realizes they are playing a game of “who commits the most original and untraceable murder,” and they seem to be only killing people who commit atrocious crimes. But when Grey joins the game and starts sleeping with Juliette (Lauren Lee Smith), who seems to be sexually open to anyone and yet is “owned” by Gallo, (according to Gallo), things soon get out of hand.
With drugs, murder and sex wrecking havoc on his life, how can Grey get out of this?
As for as murder-based plots go, I liked that the movie focuses on the how and flat out gives you the motive. You know who did it and why. You get to learn how. But you don’t have a clue who will be next. You don’t know if someone’s lying. And you really don’t know when/if Grey’s morals will kick in.
As far as unrelatable and unlikeable protagonists go, Grey is pretty up there. He seems okay enough in the beginning: he’s successful, decent and nice most of the time and a loving fiancée (Alyssa Milano) until Gallo helps reveal his darker side, and then he’s only a human being if you compare him to Gallo and gang, which isn’t saying much.
The plot, acting and soundtrack are solid. There were some scenes that didn’t need to be there, and some parts that felt either irrelevant or repetitive. It could have been shorter than it’s 95 minutes and more engaging.
But as I said before, once you get your head around the premise, it is a fun, albeit flawed ride. It has some clichés, but they are outdone by some decent surprises. And I quite enjoyed the ending.
If you like twisted movies but have a limit on how much gore and weird sex scenes you can take (the sex scenes are weird when you consider the location and timing, as well as the blood involved), give this a go.
- Supposedly it’s similar to the German movie Anatomy, but I haven’t seen it, so I can’t comment on that. However it’s supposed to be more disturbing, so brace yourselves if you want to check it out.
- House fans will recognize Weston as Cuddy’s boyfriend from later seasons.