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October 29, 2016

Movie Review: The Midnight Swim (2016)

Reviewed By: James D.

Talk about a total shocker. Watching the trailer for this film and looking at the box art, I was expecting a low budget horror film. What I got was something truly unforgettable. This is the story of a body of water actually, and it is called Spirit Lake. I do not admit this often, but I have a phobia of water. ( I do bathe, so I am not talking about running water in a house) I am afraid of the open water. So, a film to base itself around water, will peak my interest. We are told that this lake is so deep, that there may not be a bottom?

The Midnight Swim is about three sisters and one guy friend who are trying to cope with the disappearance of the ladies mom. All they know is that their mom went diving one day, and never came back. The three sisters in their mom’s house start to become intoxicated with the notion that this lake holds such a odd mystery to it. This film is told thru the camera lens. The home video hand style this film displays, gives this film such a rich intimacy about it. This film deals with loss, and it handles it in such a light yet effective way. Where you would think this film would be heavy handed with emotion, trying to grip your heartstrings, this film shows us not what death holds on us, but what life gives us.

There is a series of sequences that have dead birds, that really paint such a odd mystery over the way this film delivers a message. There is a scene in the movie, that we get almost a music video like sing along that fills the air with glee. To be followed by a role playing scene where one of the sisters’ decide to act like their mom. To watch the emotion in that scene will really give you such a kick in the gut. The way this film handles grief is refreshing, and at times very unique. This film deals with the way, that life never stops for anything. That, whether you are sad, happy or in a odd place in life, that life is going onward. This film is that art house darling that should be making careers. This is a film that should be hailed as one of the best cinematic experiences you could have. Sometimes the escapism of film is when it has a subject like loss and handles it in a way that says, “ you are human, this is how life will light your path”. Dear Oscar Committee, how could you overlook this film? P.S. You suck for doing so. This film is pure genius, a must see.

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