Most innovative premise since Canada’s PONTYPOOL
I didn’t expect much from RESOLUTION, then again, I watch each horror movie with the hope I’ll fall in love with the film. Unfortunately, that rarely ever happens – thankfully, RESOLUTION is different.
Michael Danube (Peter Cilella) leaves his wife to rescue his drug addicted best friend, Chris Daniels (Vinny Curran). The problem is that Chris is holed up in a two-bit shack and doesn’t want to be saved. Mike presses on, and the two soon find themselves caught up in bizarre circumstances where their every move – past, present, and future – is recorded and played for them…
Justin Benson penned the tale and co-directed with Aaron Moorehead. The pair had met as interns at Ridley Scott’s RSA Films, and in short order, decided to work on a low budget project together. Soon after, RESOLUTION came to fruition.
The beauty about RESOLUTION is the fantastic dialogue between the characters, thanks to the fervent emotion of Curran as the sarcastic and wired drug addict, and deadpan, and maybe too relaxed friend, Michael (Cilella). Additionally, Moorehead executes the cinematography and he does a wonderful job here. For low budget, one doesn’t have that feeling of sterility and flatness often associated with third-rate features in the genre. Better still, his composition is rock solid.
But without Benson’s intelligent script, there wouldn’t be much to discuss. The best thing is that RESOLUTION’s listed as a horror/thriller/mystery. Sure, it’s loaded with comedy, but the kind of humor one enjoys everyday if your best friend’s a sarcastic smartass. Benson’s story builds, and we’re soon introduced to a group of characters who live on the other side of David Lynch’s “Twin Peaks.” All add color and intrigued to the tale, and actually keep the trappings of the horror genre at bay for quite some time. This does not mean RESOLUTION is slow and tedious. If anything, the movie’s engaging as the suspense and tension builds with kinetic resonance.
In the RESOLUTION DVD “Special Features,” Benson and Moorehead discuss how they wanted to avoid the cliché-ridden trappings of conventional horror. They did so on a grand scale. However, one can argue they did stick to one: When the uncanny makes itself known, instead of the characters fleeing their shelter, they choose to remain. Yet, in regard to the film and its ultimate revelation, it wouldn’t have mattered if Mike and Chris had bolted. Even if the filmmaker’s had a larger budget, keeping the tale to a few locations adds to the element of isolation and hopelessness that the best horrors rely upon to keep us chewing our nails.
The movie seems to be one of those that has people reviewing it as either amazing or a piece of trash to be avoided. Thus far, few seem to straddle the fence. It’s love or hate all the way (think CLOVERFIELD). What I have noticed is that those who despise RESOLUTION seem to have no idea of the concept. And yes, those who love the film “get it.” This doesn’t mean you need to have a degree in advanced mathematics, or any other field for that matter, to figure it out what’s happening, but pay attention, dammit. On that note, I’d love to discuss the ending and what it reveals, but that would ruin the whole damn thing for you. Therefore, check it out today. And when you’re through, post your comments here so we can discuss. Regardless, I hope you find it as pleasantly surprising as I did.
4 out of 5 stars
(Photo from Imp Awards.)