Review of Chronicle (2012)

8 Feb

Chronicle (2012) is a sci-fi/action/drama film using the found footage filmmaking style, which recently has become quite popular.

Directed by Josh Trank (The Kill Point (2007 TV)) and this is his first feature film.

Written by Max Landis (Ghost Closet ’07 (2009 Short), The Death and Return of Superman (2011 Short)).

Starring: Dane DeHaan, Alex Russell, Michael B. Jordan, Michael Kelly, Ashley Hinshaw and others.

I’ll start with sharing my thoughts on the found footage films. I like them. Sure, it’s sort of a gimmick, but when done well it works and that’s all that matters. And in this one it clearly doesn’t try to pass it as a real found footage, so you don’t care that it’s so polished or you can see what’s CGI or that the guy has the sturdiest camera ever. It isn’t Paranormal Activity or Blair Witch Project. The movie doesn’t feel like a found footage movie, because a lot of times no one’s holding the camera (and it makes sense), so most of the film you see the protagonist on-screen and they can achieve some beautiful cinematography.

The movie is about three guys getting some mysterious supernatural psychokinetic powers and bonding as friends trough exploring their abilities. They do the sort of thing that any teenager would do, they have fun and that’s one of the things this film executes very well. As you see the characters having fun you’re thrown into their secret little circle that know about their powers and you’re having fun with them.

And here comes one of the best aspects of the film, the acting. I mean, the three leads are so likable and well written you get a sense of them immediately. You get to see the main character, who is this outcast at school and everybody’s treating him badly, so he decides to start filming everything to sort of  distance himself from others. Then there’s his cousin, who is just a regular guy, who tries to go out of his way to impress a girl with his philosophy knowledge so he’d seem more interesting. And there’s even a popular guy, who’s good with people and everyone likes him, he’s a candidate for school president, but he does it just because he’s good at it. And the young actors make these characters so believable that you immediately find something in them to identify with.

As they do more with their powers, they get better at them, so it starts exploring the “With great power comes great responsibility” aspect of being superhuman. And the main character Andrew uses his powers to get people to like him, but then (sort of SPOILERS!) he finds that this doesn’t work out and he just starts getting back at those who have wronged him, and it goes into a Carrie-like scenario. The way his characters evolves and you see his downfall being foreshadowed I couldn’t help, but think that this is what I wanted to see in the Star Wars prequels. Mostly thanks to DeHaan’s acting. (END of sort of SPOILERS!)

Anyway, I don’t want to give too much away, so that’s all I’m going to say.

Overall, brilliant. Entertaining and well-made, definitely recommended, even if you’re not a fan of the recent found footage fad.

"In my free time I do some voluntary car crushing at the local junkyard.|

2 Responses to “Review of Chronicle (2012)”

  1. Olivia February 8, 2012 at 9:30 pm #

    I have been dying to see this movie, but I can’t find it local just yet! This made it worse…because now I want to see it even more. Thanks for the great review!

    • karlails February 9, 2012 at 6:00 pm #

      Well, I wish you to see it soon. Thanks for reading.

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