Movie Review: The Fear Footage

A bit ago I was contacted and asked to review The Fear Footage. After looking into the film and hearing all the rave reviews, I had to check it out. You know that I’m always searching for True Fear, and according to those that have seen it, this movie has it. Soon after I received my copy of the film in the mail. Honestly, I was happy dancing around my house because I was ready to be scared. Unfortunately, maybe hearing the reviews first wasn’t the best idea.

Breaking it Down:

When the Darkbluff, Maryland sheriff’s department receives a confusing 9-1-1 call about a house, they send out Leo Cole to investigate. Supposedly, the house was torn down after a tragedy, but strangely enough, it showed back up.

Once there, Deputy Cole begins searching the area around the house but sees nothing out of the blue, yanno, except for the house! He then decides to make his way inside and is met with a dark quiet house. However, when the television in the living room turns on by itself, he decides to check out the tape inside the VCR. He then sits through three short home movies called, Birthday Party, Storm Stalkers, and See No Evil. After each movie, he takes a break to search the house.

Unfortunately for Deputy Cole, his chances of surviving the night dwindled with ever second he stayed in that house.

Thoughts:

I want to be very clear here, I didn’t hate The Fear Footage, but I didn’t really like it either. Honestly, one major issue was that it in no way lived up to the ridiculous reviews they have posted on their page. You can check out those reviews on their Instagram page or their website.

When I watched this movie for the first time, I wanted it to be perfect. I silenced my phone, turned the lights off, and grabbed my boyfriend who gets scared at everything. I thought that maybe having a movie buddy would be a great idea, and on top of that, if he got scared maybe it would scare me too! But that just didn’t happen.

Let’s start with some stuff I loved about this film.

The presentation of the DVD was perfection! I was already super excited when it showed up at my house, but then to see all the hard work they put into the presentation of it, I got way more excited.

I loved that this film plays on our fear of the unknown. We don’t know what’s going on, what Deputy Cole is facing, and what could be hiding in the dark. It makes the film that much creepier.

Here are some things I loved about each of the short films in The Fear Footage.

Birthday Party: The idea for the story was perfection. It brought clowns back to the forefront of our fears and had him invading our safe spaces.

Storm Stalkers: This one was my favorite. I loved the scene when everything hit the fan. A simple question kicks this short into high gear, “What road are we on?” And the big reveal of the antagonist was very well done. I loved seeing how creepy it was.

Speak No Evil: I really only loved the antagonist of this short. He had such a great look.

Sadly, I had a whole bunch of don’t likes for these shorts.

Birthday Party: I don’t know what time period this is supposed to be but this kid has a modern hair cut and is playing old school Nintendo. Huh? Seeing the Nintendo, I instantly assume this is supposed to be the 90’s but then the kid has a Texas Chainsaw Massacre tin lunch box on a shelf that is being sold at target now. So, I’m still confused. His mother says goodnight to him and then says, “No more nightmares!” What? Bitch, do you think he controls this shit? Go to bed lady! Lastly, and by far the worst part about this short was the rain. They digitally put in rain, badly. At one point, the main kid was looking out the window and you can see the “rain” is just over everything, meaning it was raining inside? I don’t understand why they went with that.

Storm Stalkers: Yes, this was my favorite short story out of all of them, but that’s mainly for the story concept and a little bit of the dialog. However, in an attempt to make this short look like an old VHS tape, they did these loud glitching sounds throughout the film, which I just hated! It didn’t make it creepy, it was just annoying. Then, it appeared they were trying to make this story live up to The Blair Witch Project, which it did not. If you listen to when someone is screaming, “James!” over and over again, it is almost exactly like The Blair Witch “Mike” screams.

Speak No Evil: Honestly, I fully hated this story. It was almost entirely based on jump scares, that weren’t even properly placed, and the dialog was a joke. At some point, the protagonist gets a phone call (another jump scare) from his girl who is asking if their daughter left her “favorite doll” at his house, to which he gets up, grabs it and says yes, it’s right here. People, it’s a cheap naked baby doll. While, it’s not impossible for this to be his daughter’s “favorite doll” I feel like it’s not. Maybe if it was wearing a little outfit or something, but this is exactly what it looked like.

I believe that doll is called a NOPE! Otherwise known as a Kill It With Fire!

How about we focus on the Deputy’s story:

Sadly, it wasn’t good. I do appreciate all the work that was put into The Fear Footage, and I understand that being an indie film, it’s lower budget, but there was so much that didn’t make sense. There are so many questions that I had during this film, and I wouldn’t even be able to discuss it all here. So allow me to just list them for you.

Why did the 9-1-1 call bleep out the caller’s name? If we are watching the raw footage, we would hear that, right?

Deputy Cole didn’t talk to the man who called 9-1-1?

He doesn’t call for backup before going into the house?

Why did the Cole pull his gun right away?

When investigating a suspicious house, why would Cole stop to read a little girl’s diary?

The diary states that there is something horrible in one of the closets, why doesn’t he go check the closets?

Cole is so worried about there being someone in the house that he continues his search, and then stops to play with a piano? What? Why?

With the continued fear that someone is in the house, Cole heads up stairs and watches another home movie? What’s wrong with this guy?

No horror movie should leave you with that many questions. Maybe they were trying a bit too hard to be like the other found footage films out there that really brought it. I’m not sure, but I just know that there was a ball and it was dropped pretty hard.

True Fear?

Oh, no. Goodness, no. Jump scares don’t make a horror movie, and it seems like the creator of this film didn’t get that memo. While there were some moments that were cool to see, it didn’t make for True Fear. I watched The Fear Footage twice, once in a fully dark room with my boyfriend and the second time I watched it alone. Neither time left me scared. I still sleep with the lights out, I have no trouble walking through my house at night, and my dreams still consist of love scenes between me and Freddy Krueger, so pretty normal!

Movie Review: Milk & Cookies

Maniacally Short Monday

Brings Us

If you know me at all, you know how much I love holiday horror movies! I have been looking forward to this time of year…well, all year. I love when someone can take something that is supposed to be sweet and twist it in such a beautifully bloody way! Thankfully, that’s exactly what happens in this week’s short, Milk & Cookies.

Continue reading “Movie Review: Milk & Cookies”

Short Story: The Fireplace

The Fireplace was written for Tasha Kirksey

Sitting in her living room, the silence was deafening. She stretched out on her large corner sofa, which was usually overrun by her children, but now, it was her time. She closed her eyes and let the silence wash over her, it was such a foreign sound, but a welcomed one.

Her eyes flutter as a cracking sound rang out through the living room. Without moving, her eyes began to search the room. Her eyes settle on the large empty fireplace in the corner of the room. Dropping her head to the side, she stares at the darkness within it, but just like that, the silence envelopes the room around her, again. Her eyes still locked onto the location of the strange cracking.

Shaking it off, she realized that it was probably nothing. Just her brain trying to fill the silence that settled in when her children went off to bed. The same thing would happen with her phone, she would finally find silence, but then she would hear a phantom ring as if her phone was going off, but there was no one calling.

She turned her attention to the ceiling above her. Her eyes locking onto a small blip of ketchup left there by her son, who thought it would be funny to toss ketchup covered fries into the air, it wasn’t. Weirdly enough, while she was loving the quiet of the house, she missed her kids. Not something she would admit tomorrow when they are running amok and screaming, but now, in this moment, she missed them; Their hugs, their jokes, even their tantrums. They were a handful, but they were her handful.

Again, the room around her was filled with the loud cracking sound. Her head snapped back to the fireplace. Old dirt began to tumble down from the chimney.

“It’s just an animal or something. Don’t be stupid.”

Sitting up on the sofa, her eyes stayed locked onto the fireplace.

The cracking continued.

Her heart began to race.

She started feeling like one of her kids, complaining about a monster under the bed.

“It’s nothing. You’ll see.” she stood up, her toes curling into the plushy carpet speckled with stains. Her hands began to fiddle with the bottom of her long tee shirt as she slowly made her way over to the fireplace. The cracking sound grew louder with each step. Her stomach was doing flips and her chest grew tight. The chunks of dirt seemed bigger the closer she got.

Standing directly in front of the fireplace, a sense of silliness washed over her.

She pulled her phone from her pocket and opened the camera app. Kneeling down she reached her hand into the fireplace with her camera pointing up the chimney. The smoky smell brought back memories of Christmas. She could almost see the kids opening their presents around the brightly lit tree. How she yearned for those days right now, but instead she was here, exploring the chimney as if she were searching for Santa.

Suddenly, the fear rushed back. Her stomach tightened into a knot as she quickly pressed the button on the side of her phone. A loud shutter sound echoed up the chimney triggering the cracking sound again, but this time, it was followed by a distinct shuffling noise.

She let out a gasp as she snatched her hand out of the fireplace. Her widened eyes scanned the fireplace from the floor to the ceiling. Taking a deep breath, she looked down at her phone. She opened the photo gallery and her heart sunk. It was black. The photo she just took, there was nothing. She opened her camera again and noticed that the flash was turned off. Her head dropped back as she let out a groan. A groan that seemed to be mimicked from inside the fireplace. Her eyes snapped backed to the chimney and then down to the darkened opening.

Her damp hands almost seemed to vibrate as she turned the flash on. She knelt down once again. Her knee felt as through it was grinding into the brick beneath it. She could hear her heart pounding. Her hands were clutching her phone close to her chest. The shuffling sound grew louder. Looking down at her phone, she hesitated. She took a deep breath and in one quick motion she reached her hand into the fireplace, snapped a photo, and then yanked her hand out. The bright flash from within blinded her for a moment. She stumbled backwards onto the carpet, turned to face her sofa, and sat cross-legged while rubbing her eyes. Sitting there in the middle of her living room she felt a sense of relief just being away from the fireplace. Opening the photo gallery, her heart sunk, and she felt sick. Black.

“Are you kidding me?” her eyes searched the phone for an answer. She let out a giggle when she realized that she was looking at the photo she took without the flash. She felt silly again, but that soon faded when she realized that she would have to look at the correct photo. She sat there for a moment, staring at the darkness on the screen wondering if she really wanted to know. Chances were high that it was a just a squirrel, but the What If’s were killing her.

She took a deep breath in and on the exhale, she flipped to the recent photo.

The shuffling and cracking grew louder and faster.

Her mouth dropped open as her eyes locked onto the photo. She was looking at the inside of her well-lit chimney.

The shuffling sound behind her crept closer.

The inside walls of her chimney were covered in thick black soot. And there, looking back at her, in the middle of the photo was a pure black humanoid-like creature. Its claws dug into the bricks, and its piercing red and orange eyes looking directly at the camera. Looking directly at her. Its thick black skin was covered in cracks, which revealed an underlay of dark grey. There was, what appeared to be, an old claw mark on its shoulder, as if it had been in a fight with something… bigger.

Before she could let out a scream, the same black claw from the photo was on her throat. In an instant she was spun around and face-to-face with the creature from the fireplace. A tear rolled down her cheek as the creature tightened its grip.

It turned and scurried back to the chimney, dragging her behind. It darted back up into the darkness, but her body was slammed against the opening of the fireplace. The creature readjusted and yanked harder. Her body distorted and cracked as it was forced up the chimney. The living room was filled with the sounds of popping and slurping as a flood of goopy red blood poured out the fireplace and onto the carpet.

Soon the deafening silence filled the house once again.