Lake Mungo – 2008

Written and Directed by Joel Anderson
Starring Talia Zucker, Rosie Traynor, David Pledger, Martin Sharpe, Steve Jodrell

Lake Mungo is a found footage documentary that holds subtle notes throughout. One of Mike Flanagan’s favorite films, and part of the inspiration behind his classic The Haunting of Hill House, the story begins with the disappearance of Alice Palmer (Zucker) on a family vacation. There is a trail of breadcrumbs that lead the viewer to believe all is not as it seems. And then some.

The turns are sometimes expected, and at other times completely unique. The effect is one of uneven footing for the viewer. Are we seeing visions, a hoax, a documentary of abuse or some combination of all the above. The result is worth more than one watch at least.

The acting is limited to numerous interviews, with some footage interspliced to a mostly well-timed effect. We know something is off, and Anderson is taking his time letting us know. For those who are patient enough to hang back, the end result is solid enough. Especially if one likes details.

(***1/2 out of *****)

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