Friends often ask me to recommend indie horror films on Netflix Instant. (American Netflix, sorry!) Now I can just send…
There are fates worse than death.
Tricia's husband Daniel has been missing for seven years. Her younger sister Callie comes to live with her as the pressure mounts to finally declare him 'dead in absentia.' As Tricia sifts through the wreckage and tries to move on with her life, Callie finds herself drawn to an ominous tunnel near the house. As she begins to link it to other mysterious disappearances, it becomes clear that Daniel's presumed death might be anything but 'natural.' The ancient force at work in the tunnel might have set its sights on Callie and Tricia ... and Daniel might be suffering a fate far worse than death in its grasp.
Absentia is absolutely brilliant, I don't throw that word around lightly either. This isn't one of those films where I had to look past a few flaws to enjoy it. Absentia was an experience I won't forget; taking me from the extreme depths of fear to tears streaming down my cheeks in sympathy.
People often complain about kickstarter films but this just goes to show the importance of a well-written story and the dismissal of audience expectations, where artist integrity reigns supreme. Sure, there was a budget of $70,000 but Absentia didn't need a large budget to convey the atmosphere it provided and with that we keep the filmmaker's vision in tact, no interference with producers or production companies who…
There is the kernel of a great horror film buried within Absentia but in its finished form I found Mike Flanagan’s Kickstarter-funded movie a frustrating experience. To its credit it does have a refreshing premise and as a film it is not easy to pin down (it’s part suburban supernatural horror and part psychological thriller) but the overall results are rather disappointing, particularly in its handling of its more horrific elements.
Mike Flanagan (director of the well received Oculus) has created an ambiguous chiller steeped in suburban isolation and folklore. A pregnant woman is visited by her wayward sister as she is about to sign the in absentia death papers for her husband who mysteriously disappeared seven years ago. However,…
What a fantastic surprise.
Right from the start this movie had me hooked by featuring a cast of actors that simply seemed to be normal people. It is hard to sympathize or identify with the usual dumb-as-bricks bimbos populating your run-of-the-mill slasher flicks, but these guys had me invested right from the start. Add a very intriguing story line, an emphasis on atmosphere and a foreboding sense of dread and danger that Lovecraft and Barker would be proud of and you have yourself one hell of a creepfest.
Just don't let the cover art fool you: This has a lot to offer if you are into a more classic kind of horror and are sick of the ever repeating cycle of slasher mass production.
This film has many problems, of which the biggest lie within the narrative, but I was still rather enamored by it.
I think it has mainly to do with the fact that it focusses on atmosheric horror instead of trying for the cheap scares. And considering the small budget they had they admirably manage to evoke a sense of unease and some genuinely frightening imagery.
There is, unfortunately, far too much static in the narrative to keep the momentum going. We do get characters we care about, which is a nice change.
All in all, a worthy entry in the horror genre.
"Absentia" is an independent horror film whose micro-budget veneer may scare away some audiences. For those willing to penetrate that veneer, however, the film is a gem. Slowly engrossing, "Absentia" is more about subtle scares and trying to peer into the darkness than visceral frights and gore. It is a rich and thematically layered, unpolished find that deserves an audience.
Almost fatally low budget and rough around the edges, it's saved on the merit of Mike Flanagan being a Goddamn good director. And clearly not afraid of dark endings. Oculus showed what he could do with a higher budget. I can't wait to see what he does with an even higher one.
This was a big surprise. I resigned myself to an average-to-awful low budget horror chasing jump-scares in the Paranormal Activity tradition, but instead found something a lot more melancholy.
Unfortunately, the movie isn't that scary, but it doesn't seem to be interested in that so much - but rather the effect missing loved-ones has on their relatives, and the narratives created to understand the indecipherable.
Feels just too threadbare and slow to warrant a higher rating. Flanagan's excellent "Oculus" addresses the early problems he seems to have had with keeping necessarily ambiguous plotlines engaging.
This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.
I used to be more dismissive towards low budget modern horror, in fact more dismissive towards a big amount of modern horror, low budget or not, but I grew to be tolerant and give the films chances, and let them settle before the usual spontaneous ranting I used to ''perform'' against them. Maybe I've lowered my standards or who knows maybe I am becoming wiser, but I do know that I tend to gain more on a personal level by not being as aggressively critical as I used to. So, despite immediately feeling the temptation to catapult Absentia to the bottom of the ocean to be swallowed by a pit and melted into lava and if possible sucked into the…
Pocos medios, pocas localizaciones y una historia absorvente.
Lo mejor de todo es que el tenemos a Kiko Rivera aka Paquirrin como detective del caso de los desaparecidos. Partiendo de esta premisa es normal que todo salga mal. Y los desaparecidos sigan desaparecidos.
51. Really enjoyed Oculus, so I was bummed by this. Interesting and creepy first act that ends up not doing too much.
for a horrormovie the story didn't feel that bad, but the acting and music were annoying. even in scenes when it was obvious nothing scary was going to happen there still was this sound as if we looked at the scariest scene ever. oh yeah and there is also this very depressing tune which consists of two notes during the whole movie puhhhhhh poeehhhhhhh
Here's a creepy, atmospheric indie with a vaguely Lovecraftian twist. "Absentia" has some unsettling ideas at its core and happily extends the ambiguity beyond its running time, allowing viewers to use their imaginations and dwell on the happenings. Unfortunately, all but two characters in the film inspire constant face-palming - mostly due to poor acting but occasionally because of nonsensical dialogue or jarring shifts in attitude literally from one minute to the next. Katie Parker, at least, is very good in what is essentially the lead role. The sound design on the film is a plus and contributes to a persistent sense of dread. The film would have benefited from easing back on the throttle a bit during moments when it obviously strains to befuddle the viewer, and also from fewer characters who are obstinate idiots.
Crappy acting and script, but still manages to be kind of creepy at times.
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