21 December 2010
Possum Walk 2010 - REVIEW
When I started this site back in March I never thought it would be anything more than me just throwing out my opinion of films. I never expected much out of it except the joy of writing. I sure never thought anyone else would read it so imagine my surprise when I'm asked to cover the premiere of a film. I've been to film festivals and horror conventions but never "invited" to watch and review a film. I was giddy (well as giddy as I get) with excitement. But of course knowing myself like I do my excitement was short lived. I tend to NOT have a filter and I'm honest to a fault at times... I knowingly admit this... so after I got over giddy, my second thought was "Oh God, what if I don't like it? Then what do I do?" I've been reamed by filmmakers on occasion for being too honest. I don't set out to hurt anyone's feelings or purposely bash someone's film I just do......... me.
In small towns like Possum Walk, secrets can be hard to keep. For Faith Carpenter (Maggie Conwell) her secret could be downright deadly: She’s pregnant…and a virgin. Her father, (Parrish Randall) a local preacher with dark, violent secrets of his own-tightens his grip on her driving a wedge between them. But both of them will have to put aside their differences to deal with the darkest secret Possum Walk has ever known... a serial killer who has chosen the little town to be his bloodiest venue yet.
Normally I don't expect much from the cast of a small budget film... maybe I've been watching the wrong films... but I was pleasently surprised. The two main characters Conwell and Indie veteran Randall gave solid performances. I just recently found this whole "Texas Indie Film" thing but I'm quickly becoming a fan of Randall. He's definitely a chameleon when it comes to his roles. Tyler Tackett, who could easily pass for a young Jonathan Cherry, had a pretty challenging role considering he'd only done two other films prior to Possum Walk but he handled himself nicely. Andrew Sensenig and Victoria Lane weren't really given much to do until the end but pulled it off well. Jennifer Peebles cracked me up. Yes, her dialogue was a little cliche and cheesy at times but she brought such life to the character that I didn't really even care about the dialogue. That wedding scene was fucking hilarious!
I know where writer/director Jeremy Sumrall was going with this film. I'm just not quite sure if it ever got there. I had a hard time figuring out what the true focus of the film was suppose to be. Was it the pregnant virgin or the inner turmoil of the preacher man himself or how about the serial killer? Sometimes there can be so much information thrown at you at once that it becomes overwhelming. To steal a line from a colleague - I think it suffered a bit of an identity crisis.
Robert Luke did find some great small town locations that were perfect as a back drop. Being from a town where everybody knows everybody I can say with first hand knowledge that the atmosphere they created was pretty spot on. The scene where Kristen Hall is walking down the road and you can see nothing but empty fields was one of the best shots in the entire film.
One thing I just didn't get, and it's possible that it went right over my head, was the slasher aspect of the film. There was never really any explanation of why the killer was killing. Did he/she do it just for the fun or was there some ulterior motive behind it? Given that I know who the killer is, it's easy to assume that he/she does it just for shits and giggles but it's just too hard to say for sure. I think expanding on the pregnant virgin and crazy preacher daddy story (leaving out the slasher part) would've made for a more cohesive film. All in all, I thought it was a good effort on their part. Would I watch it again, probably not but it's at the very least entertaining. The effects were good for the budget they had to work with. There was lots of blood which bodes well for a Gore Whore like myself. I applaud the work of everyone involved, I know it's not an easy thing to do. It was obvious that everyone involved with the project put their best foot forward and worked really hard. I definitely look forward to seeing what the Possum Walk family does next!