Carnival of Souls ★★★★

Gosh, this film is brilliant. 

Watching the film is like entering a trance. There’s a melancholic air that permeates every frame, and the beautifully chilling organ score befits the call of the old carnival that beckons our protagonist. 

The film uses setting just wonderfully. The shapes and shadows of the American countryside, and even Americana itself, frame a story of surreal bewilderment. Places and spaces that would normally be familiar to us (and the protagonist) appear strange and new. All of this and more is captured perfectly in beautiful visuals. 

Above all, the film has this strangely comforting feel. In its subdued tone, its quietly persistent score, and its withdrawn protagonist, we come to feel comfortable. It’s the strangest thing to describe: feeling comfort in a film that presents such strange and tragic ideas. That the film deals with life, death, and the space in between but has that feeling of comfort, is fascinating.