Anchor Bay releases the latest effort from Karl Mueller, the writer of The Divide. Getting behind the camera this time, he provides a unique kind of found footage film that will leave some scratching their head once the second half of this short-running film hits.
Penny (Sarah Jones from the sadly short-lived Alcatraz) and Scott (Jon Foster) head out into the scenic wilderness, which translates gorgeously to the screen, as it is all shot digitally. Scott wants to shoot a nature documentary, though he’s not entirely sure of what he plans to shoot, or how he plans to put it all together.
Penny, has agreed to come with him, putting her own career as a photographer on hold to live with him in middle of nowhere for a year while they put the film together.
It’s picturesque, lovely, and within the first couple of weeks, the couple are already having problems… Scott has decided to go off his meds, and he’s become increasingly lethargic, shooting less and less. Penny is angry about the sacrifices she’s made to come with him, and now he’s just wasting everything.
When they come across their neighbors homestead, Penny and Scott are both invigorated with creativity again, as they believe they have found their film’s subject, an elusive artist known only as Mr. Jones who creates macabre, scarecrow-like totems.
As they continue their investigation, they learn through interviews that Mr. Jones, if he exists may be creating these darkly artistic effigies as wardens to fend off the blurred lines of dreams and reality.
This leads us into the ‘exactly-what-the-hell-is-going-on-here’ second half of the film, which I won’t go into too much, because you know, spoilers… but you either like it or you don’t, and for the most part I did, I tend to give horror films a lot of leeway, because they ask you to buy in to certain concepts that are introduced through the film’s exposition, and if you don’t buy into them, well the final parts of the film will always disappoint.
For the most part, I liked this one, I still hate shakey-cam and there is a lot of it in this one, but once the second half of the film gets underway, the film is actually released from that in a very cool way.
The moments with Mr. Jones on the screen, are probably the best, along with the fantastic creations, check out the work of Pumpkinrot (and the website – http://www.pumpkinrot.com/).
It’s an interesting watch, but like I said, the twists and turns of the second half of the film aren’t going to please everyone.
It looks great on blu-ray, and there is some real creep going on in the film provided by the sound and the fantastic scarecrow designs.
There are some cool ideas, but I wish it could have been padded out a bit more to run a little longer, and delve into the mythology the story was setting up,
But overall, an interesting watch.
Mr. Jones is available today from Anchor Bay!