RELEASED TO TV IN 2017 and written & directed by Peter Sullivan, "The Sandman" chronicles events in the Los Angeles area when an orphaned girl with psychic abilities (Shae Smolik) is granted custody by her photographer aunt (Haylie Duff), who has a sometimes live-in partner (Shaun Sipos). Unfortunately, there's a deadly creature linked to the girl whom she calls the Sandman. Tobin Bell plays a government agent obsessed with cultivating the girl's powers while Amanda Wyss plays a psychiatrist who wants to heal her.
The theme has been around since "Forbidden Planet" (1956). The effective monster looks like a dried-up skeletal version of Swamp Thing mixed with the aliens from "Signs" (2002). Haylie is a winsome protagonist with a striking face and Tobin Bell is always good for these kinds of flicks. You'll remember Wyss from the first act of 1984's "A Nightmare on Elm Street." There's a haunting X-Files tone. I like the movie, but it's not the most compelling creature feature. There are some semi-tedious stretches, as with The X-Files.
THE MOVIE RUNS 90 minutes and was shot in Los Angeles, Acton & Hawthorne, California. ADDITIONAL CAST: Lyn Alicia Henderson appears as a staunch children services agent while Paul Logan is on hand as one of Bell's heavies.
GRADE: B-/C+ (5.5/10)
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