Monday, 25 March 2013

Grave Encounters

"Grave Encounters" (2010, Darclight, Digital Interference, Twin Engine Films, The Vicious Brothers) is a found footage horror about a Ghost Hunting Reality TV show who are filming in a supposedly haunted old insane asylum where unethical practices had been performed on the patients.

The team, consisting of occult specialist Sasha (Ashleigh Gryzko), tech guy Matt (Juan Riedinger), cameraman T.C. (Merwin Mondesir) and guest 'psychic' Houston Grey (Mackenzie Gray) are led by Lance Preston (Sean Rogerson) the entrepreneurial host. But now that they have their wish for some real paranormal stuff, can they survive the night in a real house of horrors?

I'm not usually a fan of the found footage genre, but I really enjoyed this film. The characters aren't much to write home about, but the acting was good, and it really felt like one of those crappy shows like "Most Haunted".

The build up is nicely paced, and I was happy to see that the terror slowly builds, not using every possible opportunity for a jump. It was like being on a haunted house rollercoaster in that I was anticipating what was about to happen, but it was still thrilling. It was really one of the best ghost movies I've seen in a while with some fairly impressive jumps and a nice spiral-into-madness theme going on.

The only thing I would add is that there was a scene that was just too similar to my favourite bit in 1999's remake of "The House on Haunted Hill", which felt a little too lifted. Although, to be honest I can't imagine how I could avoid making parallels between the films, considering the similarities in plot and setting.

Really, a fun little jump-and-boo film for a dark and stormy night in!

[Image: Darclight Films]