I stumbled across this unique little offering last night and I was quite surprised by the ideas it portrayed.
Directors Scott Beck and Bryan Woods have gone out of their way to give us a Found Footage film with a really original twist. It’s so original that the mighty Lionsgate Films has taken a gamble on it as one of their releases.
But this Found Footage film isn’t shot through the lens of a camera – it’s shot through the lens of a flashlight…
That’s right, you read the last sentence correctly. This film is shot entirely through the point of view of a single flashlight.
I’ll be honest – if I’d of known this beforehand I’d probably have given the film a miss but I’m glad I didn’t. This brave new flashlight idea really worked well within a ‘haunted forest’ surrounding and actually added to the overall atmosphere.
I can’t really go into detail on why the film is shot through the flashlight as I’d hit to many spoiler alerts. Let’s just say it was quite a unique and fun idea…
The plot is a very simple, bog-standard, horror film plot – Five friends play flashlight games in a forest with a long history as a beacon for troubled young people contemplating suicide.
This group of friends have decided to invite a bit of a school misfit to join them in their forest games on this occasion. She’s a bit of a geek who has a crush on one of the more popular male members of the group.
We follow the film through the flashlight of this geek newcomer as she joins in with the ‘popular kids’ antics.
But their fooling around has awoken something evil within this forest and the games soon start to take on sinister turn…
A Fresh Twist on The Subgenre
There’s no doubt that the big film companies are always on the lookout for new and unique Found Footage offerings. The production levels are always low and there’s no need to pay out massive actor’s fees.
Lionsgate has done a pretty good job here of locating an original Found Footage idea, throwing in some simple CGI and attracting half decent actors.
It works and it works well!
Beck and Woods have crafted a thriller that takes great pride in taking its audience on a rollercoaster ride. There’s not that many ‘jump-out-of-your-seats’ moments but there is a nervous creepy feeling throughout.
I was also taken back by the speed of the film as there seemed little opportunity to draw breath or look away from the TV screen ( or PC screen in my case! ).
Some parts of this film were EXTREMELY impressive and an overall credit to the Found Footage genre. One scene in particular on the train track completely took my breath away ( you’ll know what I mean when you watch it! ).
The build of the film was enjoyably impressive as new elements were continuously thrown into the story line. The suspense builds in intensity as the film progresses making the film feel relentlessly claustrophobic.
As with most Found Footage films – the realism of it all lies in the hands of the actors. The group of five is made up of competent actors that had all been on the big screen before ( American Horror Story and The Following to name but a few ).
The one downside to the film was the scare factor that was overlooked. It was very creepy and the atmosphere was perfect but they seemed to have missed a trick with making you jump.
I thought this was the perfect film setting to create a few ‘bang’ moments like Grave Encounters did so well. But instead the film decides to hone in on the type of atmosphere The Blair Witch Project provided. There’s nothing wrong with this – I just thought the film could really do with that stand-out cinematic moment ( or two! ).
But the positives far outweigh the negative when it comes to Nightlight – this was a brave and bold move in the Found Footage genre and it definitely works.
I would recommend all the regulars to this site to give this little beauty a go as soon as possible – it really is a well thought out and fun ride.
Well worth watching.