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  • Writer's pictureMartyn Wakefield


Dir. Joel Anderson

Reviewer. Martyn Wakefield

This found footage phenomenon from Australia in 2009 tears up the horror rule book for what it means to be a horror. At times unflinching voids of sheer terror yet quickly whipped back to rational explanation that taunt whether it is or not a movie of supernatural and what it means to be a "ghost".

After the death of Alice Palmer, her family tries to uncover the events that led to her end I LY to find a web of lies, deceit and paranormal sightings.

Shot with raw video footage, first hand camera recordings and news/sound bites, LAKE MUNGO is an effective journey to be part of and as the Palmers uncover new leads, the mystery becomes evermore stranger. The cast never feel like actors and deliver the confusion and emotion of their respective parts with so much conviction that by the end of the 90 minutes run time, it's hard to believe this is fiction.

What Joel Anderson's film does above other FF movies is rationalize points without expecting the audience to instantly believe what is unfolding. There are moments of sheer terror that linger in stills and the observant will spot connections early on but there's no lesser impact to the shock tactics this film produces.

Yet despite that, where LAKE MUNGO hits the spot is how down to earth it is and when all is said and done, it's the heart and connection that Alice's death eventually brings. This is a deeper film than a standard haunting and one that will linger in long after the credits.

There's an uneasy tension throughout that makes even the film makers feel as though they are on eggshells pacing to get to the bottom of the story like seeing the finish line across a mine field, it's a careful race to the conclusion that rewards with raised goosebumps and heartfelt sadness.

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