When you consider how faulty the emotions of people actually are, you then have to wonder just how accurate the advice from a shrink could possibly be. They are after all, just as flawed as the rest of us; the only real difference being the years of training it takes to become a head doctor. But training or no training, a psychotherapist is still a human being, and still prone to giving bad advice no matter how long they've studied. Unless of course, your shrink happened to be God - and that ladies and gents, is the premise of "Help From Above" from writer, director Joshua Nelson.
In this film, an angry psychotherapist gives shitty advice to her numerous clients - all while completely enraged from what I could tell. Why she doesn't just take a few days off is anyone's guess. Right? It's after this lengthy intro, about sixteen minutes of it, that we learn a mysterious man named "G" is hosting a series of quick one-off sessions. Help, and results from above are guaranteed because our illustrious doctor is God himself... it seems. Who wouldn't want to go?
It's worth noting that many things in life have their polar opposites, including this film. For all intents and purposes, "Help From Above" is the spiritual twin of another Joshua Nelson film, "Psycho-Therapy." The difference being that the twin movie is a horror film, and this one is a comedy. The plot is essentially the same save in this film, God attempts to help - and in the other film, a doctor goes insane and begins killing her clients - more or less. It's interesting to see the same essential plot used in two different ways - even sharing some of the same establishing shots. For the record, I like this film better. I don't know which came first but in many ways "Help From Above" feels much more polished - and is actually pretty comical at times.
Although a pretty solid offering, there were still some production issues that kept bringing me out of this movie. One of those was what is essentially a 16-minute introduction to the characters. That's almost half the entire film introducing people. It was funny, it was entertaining - for about eight minutes. The overall length of this film could have been shaved by about half in my opinion, and like it's counter-part horror movie, it relied heavily on numerous edits to city scenery - that were not needed. It also contained some funky fade to black transitions more often than it should have. I don't generally post links to our older write-ups, but we have a very brief article on using transitions - here if anyone's interested.
There were other places time could have been saved, such as when the clients all receive their invites. Instead of each group receiving and reading them, it could have been a montage of the groups all reading a part of the card. Something like that so instead of a half dozen or so shots of different people getting their invites, it would be one.
At the end of the day the truth is this - "Help From Above" is a fun, although slightly long feeling film. It is funny, it looks and sounds great - and has a very good reveal at the end. Had this film been edited down into a slicker, meaner and more polished version of itself - my rating would have been much higher because quite frankly, it's a good movie. As it is right now? A solid three and a half stars. Nicely done.