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It's become quite hard to come by enjoyable Psychological Horror recently, especially of the "ghost stories" type. And for that, I absolutely adored this film.
Lake Mungo is a chilling yet very emotional film, the atmosphere is bleak and solemn throughout. Filmed like an extremely convincing Mockumentary, the film takes us through the events after the death of Alice, the daughter of a seemingly ordinary and happy family. The story quickly develops and convolutes, as seemingly supernatural events start to occur. The family members, along with Alice's close friends, begin to evaluate upon their emotions and discovers the Alice that they knew yet didn't.
What I loved:
The films provides an excellent example of Nothing Is Scarier. There is no Gorn, there are no sequences of horrific things suddenly jumping at you with a Scare Chord, the horror is very refined and subtle. The emotions portrayed in the film is simply amazing. What I love the most though, are the brilliant symbolisms of the movie. For example, the supernatural activities of the film were by no means the driving force of the plot, it does, however, gives us the message that "Deaths takes everything, and what is left, are the memories of the living and dead". The ghost of Alice can easily be interpreted as a metaphor of the family's uncertainties and doubts, and indeed, the film focuses more on the family as they begin to face their emotional dilemas and try to understand Alice, whom they only just realised they failed to understand while she was alive.
You will need a bit of patience for this movie. It is quite slow paced, I can see some people getting bored after the first major twist of the movue. Although, since this film relies so heavily on atmosphere and story telling, it is only to be expected to be slow-paced.
Scare Factor: Yes, despite the heavy emotional drama of the film, it is still a spine-tingling ghost story. The fact that they never truly show what the characters (such as Alice) truly experienced during their nightmares only makes it all the more creepy. Really, can you imagine what it must be like to see your own untimely demise before you, coming yet you cannot act, scary implications...
Lake Mungo is a deep film that will leave a you with a LOT to ponder, no doubt, 8.5/10.
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