My first movie review for the site takes a look at Chronicle, a movie about three high school mates who discover super human powers after a mysterious happening in the woods. They find their lives quickly changing as they come to terms with there new strengths and the side effects that come with them. It poses the question of what would happen to your life if you obtained super human strength?
Directed by Josh Trank, the movie is usually shown from the vantage point of the camera of Andrew (Dan Dehaan) which he carries around for basically the entire film. Andrew is an outcast, bullied at school and not very social. Logically it makes sense that he starts to turn a little dark once he is aware of his new found strength.
Matt (Andrew Russell), Andrew’s more normal cousin also obtains these powers, when together with with his friend Steve (Michael B Jordan) the three of them explore a mysterious hole in the woods. This is when the movie starts to become pretty interesting, and I’ll admit I jumped out of my seat during this scene when most in the cinema seemed pretty calm.
Probably the most enjoyable part of the movie is the three teens experimenting with their early, not as strong powers. There are many laughs to be had and the mood as set in ‘discovery mode’ where the boys are playfully mucking around and having some laughs. While this movie is not a Comedy, I really enjoyed this part and it sort of gets you a bit relaxed for what ultimately starts to turn into a darker plot.
You then start to get hints that things are starting to go wrong. Nose bleeds, arguing and finally a nasty car crash that injures a civilian and now things are getting serious. Without giving too much away, the struggle now begins between the characters, with rules being implemented to harness the powers…. rules that ultimately aren’t kept.
The concept of the film is great, and at this point I was keen to see what was going to happen next. Still being shown from the vantage point of the camera, which while took some adjusting to, was quite worthwhile, as it was not a shaky camera like that in The Blair Witch Project or Cloverfield. Other cameras are introduced, primarily a girl that Matt likes who also seems to carry a camera around with her (weird people right?). The film continues the whole way with this style, even reverting to CCTV footage when it had to, although towards the end you can’t even tell (and I’m not even 100% sure if it was camera footage towards the end).
There was little to no music in this film, I tried to remember a scene with music but I simply couldn’t, it’s a very silent film at times but there’s always something happening. It is definitely more focused for the younger generation in my opinion, and teenagers should love it, while still appealing to others.
The story of Chronicle was interesting, and while I loved the concept, the cast and even the camera style, it ultimately did not move me. Without giving spoilers away, I felt the action scenes towards the end were very predictable and dull, and while most of the movie was predictable in parts it was an enjoyable type of predictable up until then.
Overall I liked Chronicle, especially from the time they discover there powers and start to use them and it was good entertainment. It made me laugh at times, it kept me intrigued and ultimately fascinated by the idea of it all and it was visually appealing as well. Sadly though I felt the ending was unemotional, and while I was happy with the ‘result’ of it all I’m not sure I would give it another watch. Luckily, Chronicle is only 84 minutes and probably worth a watch, especially if you liked the trailer. C+