1940: the entire population of Friar, New Hampshire walked up a winding mountain trail, leaving everything behind. 2008: the first official expedition into the wilderness attempts to solve the mystery of the lost citizens of Friar.
One Morning in New England, 1940, the entire population of Friar New Hampshire - 572 people - walked together up a winding mountain trail and into the wilderness. They left behind their clothes, their money, all of their essentials. Even their dogs were abandoned, tied to posts and left to starve. No One knows why. A search party dispatched by the U.S. Army eventually discovered the remains of nearly 300 of Friar's evacuees. Many had frozen to death. Others were cruelly and mysteriously slaughtered. The bodies of the remaining citizens are still unaccounted for. Over the years, a quiet cover-up operation managed to weave the story of Friar into the stuff of legends and backwoods fairy tales. The town has slowly repopulated, but the vast wilderness is mostly untracked, with the northern-most stretches off limits to local hunters and loggers. In 2008, the coordinates for the "YELLOWBRICKROAD" trail head were declassified. The first official expedition into a dark and twisted wilderness ...Written by
Andy Mitton and Jesse Holland
70% excellent but takes a serious mis=step in the third act
For the first 70 minutes of this film, I thought I had found my new favourite horror movie. There are sequences here that will take your breath away - IF you are a fan of true psychological horror and not the mainstream CGI crap that hits the multiplexes. The concept is fascinating, and the set-up is superb. The sound design of this film is flawless, and has one of the best uses of music I have ever experienced. The music... it's skin-crawling, and is almost a character in the movie. Likewise, the violence and gore. Very underplayed, timed well and not gratuitous. But when it hits, it's incredibly effective.
But then something goes awry. The plot becomes muddled and almost self-important, the actions of the characters don't really add up... it almost feels like a different film than the intense, slow-burn of the first two acts. It reminded me of 'Insidious' in this regard; incredibly good for the first two thirds then becomes too hokey in its final reel.
It's a shame, because this had the potential to be a genre classic. As it is, the unconvincing third act makes this an effective but ultimately unsatisfying film.
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