Monday, 24 September 2012

Cultish Cinema

Sound of My Voice follows a young couple infiltrating a suburban cult with a nebulous plan to make an documentary expose but find themselves out of their depth in the presence of supposedly time travelling leader. It's a modest little film, with confidently quiet performances from the cast but it's lowfi, hipsterish style isn't backed up with enough substance and as the plot progresses it loses focus and the tense atmosphere is frittered away in a trite ambiguity.

Elizabeth Olsen puts is an unexpectedly nuanced performance as a cult escapee in the unsettling drama Martha Marcy May Marlene. No condo basements and soft following robes here instead it's a rough and rapey country commune with a Manson-esque hillbilly ruler, which, through flashbacks, explains our protagonist's difficulty in readjusting to everyday life and the unshakable paranoia that haunts her. Like Sound.... it's a modest, sparingly scripted film that culminates in a predictable finale but it at least manages to sustain it's atmosphere right to the end. A creepy, disturbing little film.

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