Tension and dread run high in Mitch McLeod’s character based psychological Horror movie about the gradual breakdown of a couple’s marriage. Check out our review now!
One sign of a great film is always an intriguing and enticing opening, which is something, believe it or not, that is more difficult to find than one would think. When it happens though, it’s great, and it’s certainly true of Silhouette from director Mitch McLeod, which features an opening scene that sets the tone with ominous intrigue. The imagery is brutal and outstanding: a woman lying on the grass at night, covered from head to toe in blood. The camera slowly pans out from her eyes, further and further back, and immediately shows to us, the audience, that the filmmakers are not only interested in visual, cinematic storytelling, but also that they know what they’re doing.
I will be honest, I loved Silhouette, and found it to be a tense, engaging Horror movie, which is high praise as it clocks in at almost 2 hours long. This is long for any film, so one brave enough to do it must believe in its story. For the most part, I can tell that writer and director Jack McLeod really does. Having said that, the film does drag a tiny bit in certain places, and probably could be cut down a little. It’s not a big issue though, and the piece does a great job of holding its tension.
Silhouette takes the Antichrist approach and follows leads Amanda and Jack Harms (a cleverly chosen surname that I’m sure McLeod is very well aware of) as they make the move to a new home, following the loss of a child. The setup is familiar: the new house is to fix their marriage and woes and take them back to what once was. Naturally, this doesn’t go to plan, and slowly devolves into following the characters down a psychological, Alice in Wonderland-esque rabbit hole which, inevitably, ends in disaster (it would be a spoiler to reveal what sort of disaster).
Mitch McLeod directs Silhouette with style and restraint, and he has done an excellent job in creating the world that exists in the film. It looks great and is pretty well performed too. Whilst low budget, indie/amateur films often suffer from poor acting, the two leads here have great chemistry and carry the emotion of the story for the duration of the film. The guilt and melancholy and sadness of a broken marriage are rife throughout, and there’s a palpable sense of dread that looms overhead. This is a testimony to the film’s respect for its genre too, which it proudly wears on its sleeve. In doing this, there’s a wealth of tropes available to service the story, and McLeod uses them all to give the audience the feeling of tension and dread that they so often want from this kind of film.
If you’re a fan of stylishly shot cinema, Silhouette is for you. If you’re a fan of emotional character drama, in particular, those with a Horror spin, then it’s for you too. Kudos to the cast and crew for making a low-budget movie look expensive and slick!