I had read several reviews on this film before finally sitting down to watch it last Saturday night. I got my review pad out, picked up a pen and cracked open a beer as I was sure I was in for a treat.
And what a blinding start! We’re inside a cop car viewing things from their ‘cop cam’ as they pull over a motorist. The next minute a crazed man with a carpentry hammer pops up from nowhere and ‘has a go’ out the cop interviewing the driver…….awesome!!!!!
Yeah that was a great start……what happened to the rest of the film?
Well it was certainly not all it was cracked up to be!
Muirhouse is an author that is doing research for a new book and guess what……..he’s a part time ghost hunter as well as an author (surprise, surprise!).
The first thing to hit me about the lead actor was his accent – he was an Aussie. This was cool as I’ve sat through quite a few impressive Australian horrors recently and I definitely think this genre works for them.
The director Tanzeal Rahim had obviously taken a long hard look at the found footage genre and decided the ‘Australian Way’ could work wonders with it.
Well at Least he Tried…….
The idea was sound enough and the film was only 75 minutes long – it should of worked out really……there are no excuses!
Early on in the film I was hit by a line that set the alarm bells ringing:
“We mean you no harm……”
Come on – is that any way to speak to a ghost? Just a little pointer here – You couldn’t harm a ghost even if you wanted to!!!!!
So I decided to overlook one of the cheesiest lines I’ve encountered in this genre and carried on with the rest of the film……
I suppose I better give you a clearer scope of the film’s plot. Our new best friend (Muirhouse) is setting out to investigate a haunted house aptly named Monte Cristo.
It’s an interesting enough film set up to begin with as a mockumentary interviewing past tenants of the haunted house. There are a few ‘yawn’ moments but otherwise it keeps you interested (that EVP demonstration was way to long!).
He does a few radio show interviews and we learn a little more about the house and it’s history. We hear about a few exorcisms within the property – all good horror stuff!
When it comes to the actual investigation we find out that Muirhouse must arrive at the property shortly before the rest of the filming crew – he does not seem to happy about this (and neither would I really!).
So we get to the house and guess what – they’re late! Wow, I didn’t see that one coming! So good old Muirhouse is stuck in the Monte Cristo……alone! He is obviously surrounded by fitted cameras in every corridor and room and he has his own camcorder (the Found Footage norm).
It’s all quite polished and realistic but that tends to be it’s downfall in the end! I felt they dwelt way to much on how good the place looked and how creepy the filming was – nothing happened!
Nope, nothing happened until right at the end of the film! There were the typical doors opening by themselves, voices and creaks but that’s about it! Surely we deserve something else from this genre by now?
It’s a crying shame because the set up was VERY realistic and the atmosphere was great – they just completely failed to capitalize on this!
Well when the lights go out the film hits a ‘real time’ function which could of been extremely scary but wasn’t!
It does a good job of putting you in Muirhouse’s shoes much like a ‘first person’ perspective of an Xbox game. This should of worked but didn’t as it wasn’t frightening enough.
I feel sorry for the director and the actors as they got many aspects of this film right but a couple of important ones WRONG. They needed a lot more visual treats within the build up of the film – it relied way to much on the ending (which is good but not good enough to carry the rest of the film!).
Again if you like Found Footage horror you will enjoy points of this film but overall it has to be classed as a big disappointment. It had SO MANY chances to shine and didn’t. Good effort but I’m afraid it failed to deliver.