Another Netflix Trilogy bundle, this one focusing on favorably reviewed horror/suspense on Rotten Tomatoes: Cam (93% | Avg. 7.1/10 | 75 reviews), The Apostle (79% | Avg. 6.7/10 | 57 reviews ), Calibre (93% | Avg. 7.4/10 | 15 reviews).
A poor man’s imitation of Dark Mirror without the competence of novelty or execution, Cam sports the confluence of the incel community and Hot Girls Wanted as man’s depravity is put on display. Daniel Goldhaber and his band of writers had a general idea of what they wanted to do, but even that proved to be a prolonged and ineffectual exercise in futility as addiction becomes the driving force for the all too human desire for attention.
In theory, Cam is an important film about the perils of the fame online community, where people without any discernible qualities are strangely made the idols of their own design as perverts flock to the open windows of weakness in self-serving desires to pander to the vices of women. And yet, as with Searching and Ingrid Goes West, there is something deeply unfulfilling in all those ways that makes Dark Mirror effective.
Driven by the profuse of blood and noise making, The Apostle sports an impressive production design with a thin script resembling The Village for gore fans. This film about the occult finds one man’s motivation to rescue his sister from the grasp of fanatics who sustain their morbid existence through ritualistic sacrifice, purification by blood, and what appears to be a hostage situation of a town with wandering clientele with no discernible features aside from being warm bodies.
Aptly titled, this film goes the core of the human material in its capacity for good and evil. Harking back to traces of the Anglo-Saxon English society, we see a death that triggers a debt: an ingrained flesh for flesh legal structure within a remote town striving to retain a semblance of stability by the sheer character of one man’s sense of justice. A movie about the essence of civilization and chaos, two friends find themselves in a situation born by happenstance and poor decision-making until their foolishness is put to the trial of local members.
Perhaps what strikes me most intriguing about Matt Palmer’s finely tuned script is his ability to formulate a sense of justice in the midst of chaos through the attachment of this very sense to only a few, rarified persons. In world of a billion savages, we have only a few possessed with the light of humanity.
This, to me, is frightening.