It's a shame that "Mute Witness" never got the attention it deserved. When I first saw it, it scared the bejeezus out of me, and I am usually the first to be blase about horror/thrillers.
The story is set in a an old Russian factory that's being used to make (funnily enough) a horror movie. The heroine Billy Hughes is the mute special effects artist who is also working on the film. However, she finds herself locked in the factory by accident, and in trying to get out, sees a snuff movie being made.
What follows is some of the most gripping, suspenseful filmmaking since Alfred Hitchcock. From the dramatic, disorientating, and humorous scene that isntroduces the film, right through to the many rapid-fire plot twists at the end.
Of course, having the heroine play as a mute does provide several opportunities for the plotline's development, which are all used, perhaps to the point of nausea, and some of the acting can be a bit hammy, (the Director was definitely played for comic relief) but overall is effective when it counts! The humour is, fortunately, mostly subtle, and doesn't turn the film into a farce.
Mute Witness is the perfect film to watch on Halloween. It combines subtle humour with pure suspense, has a very twisted plot, without being over-elaborate, has a good bit of blood and gore for those who would prefer ('Jason vs. Freddy' over 'Psycho'), and has a hell of a pace to it, just try not to scream too loud....