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Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Skew (2011)

This past weekend (March 9th & 10th), my friends from "Film Reviews From the Basement" hosted Dark Fest 2012.  Also on hand was director Sevé Schelenz, to bring attendees his award winning film, "Skew".  I was unable to attend the festival myself, but Jay has kind enough to lend me his copy of this film before hand so I could watch and review myself.

Simon has a new camera, and decides to videotape him and his friends- Rich and Eva as they travel on a roadtrip to attend a wedding.  Unfortunately, something seems to be wrong with Simon's camera... it's showing him things that will leave a lasting impact on him and his friends before the trip is finished...

"Skew" wasn't that bad of a film- but it wasn't what I would call a great film either.  I loved the premise.  It added a nice supernatural element to the story- especially when it's revealed that only Simon is able to see what's being shown him through the view finder, and not on the footage itself.  While the film did drag in a couple of spots, they did help to develop the character of Simon and his relationships with the others.  The ending was clever as well- being open to various possibilities- but leaving it up to the viewer to decide for themselves what the "truth" is.

For using a simple camera, there is some really good shots and special effects.  Schelenz using the camera to nicely paint the mood of the story, and even as a character of its own.  I liked the way they "skewed" people's faces through the view finder, and the make up for the apparitions.  The effects and the camera usage worked well together to make the jump scares and the pacing interesting and effective.

If this movie were to have a flaw, I would have to say it was with the characters.  I had a hard time from the beginning believing that these three were really friends.  Their relationships seemed strained already... as if Rich and Eva only tolerated Simon.  Not only that, I didn't even really care much about the three of them.  The only character that held my interest was Simon- but only because he was a bit of a creepy bastard.  Beyond that, I felt little emotional investment in them.

Would I recommend "Skew" for at least one viewing?  Yes.  Would I recommend it for a POV/Found Footage movie night?  Yes.  Would I recommend it for multiple viewings?  Probably not.  Because of that, I'm going to have to put, "Skew" into "The Bad".

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