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No Through Road (2009) – Movie Review

No Through Road (2009) - Movie Review

This Found Footage project was actually on the original list I compiled when I first bought the domain for this very website – it shows how pointless my organizing skills are!

I had a list of about 50 low-key or amateur/indie titles that I was dead-set on covering for the first few reviews on this site…but that plan obviously didn’t pan out too well…

I remembered it at about 11.30 last night, but I knew I’d forget about it by this morning, so I decided to sit through it again on a ‘late showing’.

A pretty cool and interesting web series that seamlessly weaves into a Found Footage film. It’s British, like me, and it’s totally FREE to watch on YouTube…

The Plot

“On December 17th 2008 four 17 year old boys were found dead in their car at an abandoned farm, 10 miles from their hometown. This video contains the unedited footage from the camera belonging to one of the boys, also found in the car. If you have any information regarding the footage please contact us at the website given at the end of the video.”

YouTube Uploader…

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Yeah, that’s about all I have to go on with this Found Footage project at the moment…other than the fact that the actors were all English and it was filmed on a few country back roads…

But, please don’t let that put you off.

This was one of the first Found Footage efforts to cause a stir on YouTube by attracting what I like to call – ‘complete dickheads’.

Yeah, these are the guys (and girls) that sit through a Found Footage movie and are convinced that the whole thing is real. These people need help.

Anyway, not long after the release of No Through Road, there were a ton of Reddit streams devoted to the project – most of which were started up by people who thought the footage was real (give me fucking strength!).

You can actually find a few of these…people…by scanning through the older YouTube comments below the video. Of course you also get the responses to these comments off horror trolls, which are equally hilarious!

Conclusion

I’m kinda amazed that this project isn’t mentioned that often in Found Footage circles these days – in my opinion several more recent ‘bigger budget’ films have picked the bones out of No Through Road and used their ideas on a larger scale.

It’s a bit of a complicated and confusing mess – so it’s best to put on your ‘Donnie Darko Hat’ before sitting down to watch proceedings.

But the confusion it generates is part of it’s overall appeal – it really does work well.

There are definitely down sides, due to the project’s age, but these can be easily overlooked when you consider it as a whole.

The cast were more than capable…and I don’t think ANY of them had ventured into the world of acting before this baby came to life.

The cinematography and the setting were near enough perfect for the plot line they were trying to travel, and the pace of the plot was superb!

The one ‘stand out downer’ to the whole thing was the filmmaker’s choice of interference/glitching/film bleed…there was far too much of it throughout the experience…but I could see what they were going for!

I think they maybe got a little carried away in Adobe After Effects and Premiere during the final editing of the composition, but I can forgive them for that due to the creation they gave to the world for free.

It’s not going to be everyone’s cup of tea but…

The film left me with no real negative feelings – a little YouTube cult gem in my book (and it’s stood the test of time quite well!).

Chris

5 Comments

  1. I just watched No Through Road after catching up on your reviews that I’ve missed. Didn’t realize that it really was a web series till I saw that it had 4 parts to it. No kidding about the Donnie Darko hat, this film was EVERYWHERE. First part was clear cut enough, then it just got so confusing after, though it helps that there were a bunch of comments giving theories on time loops, the tunnel leading to an alternate reality, etc. The confusion does give it appeal I will say, because it takes a standard vanilla concept with a spooky road at night and turns into something a little deeper and unique. Actually, looking back on it, this whole concept gives me some “Mr. Jones” vibes. But yeah the audio distortion noises did distract at points, so that was annoying, but overall an interesting take.
    Also, someone said this in the comments and it makes sense: parts 1 and 2 had both sets of friends checking out rabbits, and mysteriously that’s what led them down the metaphorical rabbit hole in the first place.

    • Hey DJ – I’m gonna have to look at those comments a bit deeper myself…the project definitely is a head-scratcher at the end of the day. Glad you enjoyed it though! 🙂

  2. I love this project!!! It is actually what ultimately made me decide that if a few adolescent amateurs in the UK could make such an engrossing lil piece of found footage, then I could do it too 🙂 Finally just got offered a job at a hospital hear in Nashville with Central Sterile department (means I can actually save some dough to get my next found footage short funded and ready to go). The first one is going to either be a version of the black eyed children urban myth or a mature gay relationship where they film a relationship diary and while leaving bar gets attacked by muggers and beat, killing one. The rest of that one delves into depression, anger, then revenge by the remaining partner-could be great.

    • Way hey! Congrats on the job Brandon! 🙂
      I like the sound of both of those plots but the gay relationship angle sounds REALLY interesting – pretty sure nothing like that has been attempted in this genre yet, and it would certainly stand out as unique and original. A pretty cool basis for a modern-day revenge thriller…

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