Posted: October 20, 2014
Mercy is based on King’s story Gramma from Skeleton Crew. To make it work as a feature film running just under 90 minutes the filmmakers had to expand the story. They give us a backstory about how Gramma, or Mercy as she is named here, always wanted to have kids and in order to get them she had to make a deal with the Devil. It’s a pretty lame backstory but I guess they had to come up with something. As we enter the story Mercy has been in a home for some time but now she can’t stay there and it’s up to her daughter, George’s mother, to care for her and George and his brother have to help.
As it turns out the Devil inside Mercy needs a new host and is lurking to enter George at the right moment and it all turns out to be a pretty silly story that we’re told. It’s not very scary even though it’s pretty obvious that’s what they are going for. There are some moments where you jump because someone scares you but that’s about it. You don’t really get scared by Mercy or what happens to her. Or care about it for that matter.
I also have a very hard time believing in the character Mercy. She is supposed to be in a vegetable like state but it mostly looks like she’s a kid not wanting to finish her dinner. Mercy is played by Shirley Knight and I had big hopes for her but this time she doesn’t deliver. She gives a weak performance that is very hard to believe. George is played by Chandler Riggs (known from The Walking Dead) and he is OK but not much more. Some of the scenes you believe in but some feels really fake and played. Not at all what I expected.
All in all Mercy is a weak and not very good movie and I can understand why it sat unreleased for a long time and then just quietly appeared on iTunes…
Lilja's final words about Mercy
You can find some fragments from King’s Gramma in Mercy but not as much as I had hoped and you don’t have to be a genius to realize why they didn’t call this one Stephen King’s Mercy.