Don’t worry, I’m not going to give away the ending. I’m not even sure I could if I wanted to.
This certainly isn’t a horror movie, despite what the trailer might want you to believe. It’s got horror elements, and I guess some sci-fi things as well. But it’s mostly a family drama. That’s not to say it isn’t spooky, because at times, it certainly is. But it’s not scary. There’s no jump scares which is a good thing, there’s not even much suspense. There are, however, silent men in white hazmat suits, and a horrible spider-like thing. You can’t definitively say it’s a spider because you never really see all of it. Then again, maybe that’s the point. Certainly, *who* saw *what* is very much in question.
It’s also a heavy movie. Certainly not your typical go-to-theater-and-spend-$30 popcorn title. But if you take it for what it is, or what I *think* it is, it’s not a bad movie. It’s well-acted, looks great, and the score was particularly effective. It reminded me of Mica Levi’s amazing score for the underrated movie “Under the Skin.” It’s certainly a much better score than most of these scary movies popping up all over.
We’re never quite certain what’s going on though. Not that it’s confusing, because it’s fairly easy to follow. It’s just a case of “what’s really going on?” I’m still not sure. I think I have it figured out, and then something occurs to me, and I think “well, maybe...”
But, I’m taking a stand right now. Here I go. I’m tired of these horror movies (oh right, I said this wasn’t horror) with the head-scratching endings. It’s like the writers are being paid by how many words they DON’T use. Being esoteric and mysterious is one thing, but deliberately being that way shouldn’t be an excuse to not tie things up neatly at the end. So...there’s that.
What I was really, totally impressed by, however, was the acting. Specifically, the lead Drew Matthews. He’s a great actor that I’d never heard of. And that means absolutely nothing. But he has a monologue in the middle of the movie, where he’s leaving a voicemail for his brother. It’s an uninterrupted take, and he nails it. It’s rare that I find a male lead cry in a movie that I found believable. When are directors and actors going to realize that everybody knows when you cry, you don’t necessarily look your best? Your eyes get read, as does your nose, and your voice chokes as well. He tries to keep his shoot together. He’s trying so hard not to lose it. And he almost makes it. It’s such a completely understated moment, but it’s actually touching.
It’s an okay movie. It’s fairly unusual (in a good way), though it does leave most of the answers up to the viewer (in a good way, and a “huh?” way). It’s not anything I think I’d ever watch again, but I’m sure I’ll remember it for a while, though. If you don’t expect a Cronenbergian sci-Fi horror hybrid, it’s not going to be a total waste of time. I’m glad I didn’t go to a theater to see it, but it’s not the worst way to spend a Tuesday night at home.