Director – Joel Anderson
Cast – Talia Zucker, Rosie Traynor, David Pledger, Martin Sharp, Steve Jodrell, Tamara Donnellan, Scott Terrill
Release Year – 2008
Reviewed by John of the Dead
I came across this flick while reading up on other recent horror flicks and decided to put a rush on this film given the positive buzz I had read on this piece. This flick comes with a unique plot and a nice emphasis on how grief can distort the mind, but unfortunately in my opinion this one did not amount to the fantastic praise this film received from other reviewers in the realm.
“Lake Mungo” follows a family that recently suffered the loss of their daughter, who’s body was found in a local lake. Soon after her death, they begin seeing the young daughter’s spirit in their home. They try desperately to look for answers into why she is manifesting herself into her home, which inadvertently has strong mental effects on the family.
This film comes off as a very well done pseudo-documentary with a high production value. I found this pretty impressive given this flick was pretty much under the radar during its release. Some of you may like this, and some of you who do not enjoy these types of horror films may not. Personally, I am 50/50 on the matter. If it is executed properly then I am fine with it, as I was with “The Fourth Kind”, but other films have used this approach and failed miserably.
The storyline comes off as a simple one, but it is quite complex when things get going. Many different elements and twists are added as the film goes on, some good, and some a bit unsatisfying. I have always been a fan of ghost haunting/visitations, so naturally that element of the film appealed to me. Unfortunately, the ghost aspect of this flick was a bit too tame for my liking and I never saw any good scares or overly creepy scenes. The scares were mild at best, and “mild” in the supernatural horror sub-genre is not good enough. I did like this film’s use of grief, and how it can affect one’s perception and understand of a situation. We see the family members confuse certain events due to the traumatic events that took place, and it adds to the true horror of the film as they cannot decipher from what is real and what is not. When it comes to losing a loved one, that sense of confusion can be quite horrific.
Direction-wise this flick is a winner, and I can see director Joel Anderson(who also wrote the film) being awarded future projects as long as he keeps his talent. Although he did not provide any great scares, he did manage to execute the mild scenes to where he made the best out of the mild situation. The way the film is told was done well by him, as I mentioned earlier this flick really does come off as something reminiscent of “The Forensic Files”. Yes, it is that well played off.
Overall, this is a decent watch that comes in an interesting format but fails to provide any good scares or overly interesting elements. I was a bit disappointed with this film, but I am sure some of you can be fulfilled by this film more than I was.