Friday, 8 February 2013
This has to be the most subdued movie that focuses on snuff that I have ever witnessed. Tom's life is going nowhere. He is becoming more distant from all aspects of his life. He and his friend Dan were childhood friends, and massive horror fans to boot, going as far as making short films together. But adulthood has separated them, even though they work in the same office. Tom has opted for the married with children life, whereas Dan prefers the single life. Bothered that they never do anything together anymore, Dan invites Tom over to his place to watch a movie that has been delivered to him. What appears to be an authentic snuff movie doesn't have an effect on Dan, who just thinks it's some kind of joke, but Tom reacts very differently.
This is a low budget movie, but it is also something so much more. Intelligent and subtle aren't words used very often in low budget cinema, but this movie manages to be both of these things and more. The movie is incredibly character driven, and you really feel that Dan wants so much more than friendship with Tom. Whether that's just me sensing homoerotic overtones or not I don't know, but that's how it came across.
Things take a turn for the worse when the woman Dan is dating turns up in the next movie he is sent, and both Dan and Tom realize the movies are in fact real. The movie then asks a lot of questions, forcing you to make up your mind while also cleverly giving red herrings so as to confuse the viewer or throw them off the scent of the killer.
The movie is also incredibly ambiguous, forcing the viewer to actually think about things rather than reveling in gore and stereotypes. That isn't to say there isn't gore, because there is. A disemboweling is worthy of being mentioned, the FX are impressive and they are handled incredibly well.
All in all a refreshing experience, and one that reinforces my view that independent cinema, when handled well, beats anything that Hollywood can put out hands down.
Many thanks to Writer/Director Elias Ganster for providing a screener.