The Vast of the Night Review
As I sat down to watch this on my iPad, unfortunately don’t have it on my TV (long story), I didn’t really think anything of it. I was clearly naïve because this is a film I’m not only glad I saw, but I’m pissed I didn’t see it sooner. A brilliant string of long takes that’s comprised of probably the best acting I’ve seen from basically first time actors. One of the best directions I’ve seen in a film from a first time director. Most films I’ll write while I’m watching it from home; different pieces of writings. However, this film made me put down the laptop and I was glued for to the screen for the whole film. Not only did this destroy my sleeping schedule for today, but completely changed my perception of what a movie can be on such a low budget. On a meager budget of 1 million dollars, Andrew Patterson was able to make craft one of the best films of 2019 and one of my favorite sci fi/horror films of all time.
A small town is shooked upside down when a mysterious sound comes blaring into the old switch boards. Once it’s played on the radio, a slew of eye witness testimonies come pouring in. ￼
I’m not exaggerating when I say this, but it was white knuckled intense. It’s definitely going to be a subjective taste for use, as it doesn’t rely on jump scares or frightening imagery to gets its point across. It solely relies on ten minute takes of actors just spouting dialogue at you. This could definitely be boring and dry but not here.
I’m not afraid of most films anymore or don’t get scared when it comes to creepy storytelling (not trying to flex. The illusion of scary films are lost these days), but this creeped me out. It’s due to a lower budget that actually worked extremely in the favor of the film. I’m glad this didn’t get a bigger budget because brilliant dialogue and affective camera work was able to engross me into the amazing stories. The actors portraying these characters sold every aspect and this film felt like a recreation of a documentary. I watched in awe as the camera didn’t cut and allowed the actors to act. It’s a rare instance where a film truly had me in suspense for majority of the film. It was a truly an amazing experience.
There’s only a couple of critiques I can honestly give. The first is the lighting of some of the scenee, which I’m not surprised considering the budget. The other is I wanted more. But, I can’t complain because I’m glad what I got. However, it had me wanting to just listen to more stories of this town and the encounters they’ve had.
This film will stick with me for a long time in a good way. This is one of the rare instances where I instantly want to watch it again right away. I’m dying to go back and see if I missed something or to listen to one of those creepy stories again. This has me sitting here questioning my own writings. It’s a film that instantly expired me to dive into my own writings so I can bring this much joy to someone else. Without a doubt this film is a masterpiece. It might not be your cup of tea but this is right up my alley.
This definitely reminded me of a lower budget Close Encounters of the Third kind mixed with a little Super 8. Like those films, they're able to build suspense of the unknown and unseen. It’s not usually about what’s in your face and loud that makes a film creepy, but whats hiding under the surface.