Movie: The Conspiracy
Director: Christopher MacBride
Writer: Christopher MacBride
Studio: Resolute Films and Entertainment
An original subject mixed with great acting makes this found footage thriller stand out in a genre riddled with mediocrity.
Since its inception, the found footage genre has been mostly dominated by horror films. As soon as people figured out that you could make something scary for cheap by using a found footage premise it seemed like a new feature came out every few months. With a few exceptions, most of these films are set up with a documentary premise that spirals out of control and blah blah blah shaky cam ending. This weekend a new film hit iTunes that again uses this all too familiar premise, but in surprising turn of events actually delivers something rather interesting. It’s not quite horror and it’s certainly not real, but The Conspiracy does give us hope that found footage can still be used to create original and engaging stories.
The setup is simple enough. Two friends (Aaron and Jim) set out to make a documentary about a conspiracy nut. This guy is way off the deep end, posting news clippings all over his apartment connected with strings in a way much crazier than even the heights of A Beautiful Mind, but soon after they interview him he disappears without a trace. Aaron soon finds himself getting sucked in to all of the man’s theories and begins to believe there may in fact be a real secret organization. At this point the focus of the documentary changes to learning more about a group known as The Tarsus Club, and shortly thereafter the world as Aaron and Jim know it begins to unravel. They travel farther and farther down the conspiracy rabbit hole, and realize a little too late that they may have gone too far.
The hardest part about making great mockumentary/found footage films is getting the right actors, and in this respect The Conspiracy hit a home run. Both leads are very convincing, but Poole specifically display range not usually found in this type of film (forgive the bad pun). He goes from lighthearted and fun at the beginning of the film, to paranoid and obsessed by the end, and the transformation is flawless. If I had not seen him in other films, it would have been borderline believable that this was not just a movie. The way the story unfolds keeps you hooked, even when genre cliche run amok, and because of this there is chance that by the time the credits roll you just might discover you’ve moved to the edge of your seat.
Review written by: Justin Proper