Tuesday, April 16, 2013

MODUS ANOMALI (2012) movie review

Modus Anomali (2012) d. Anwar, Joko (Indonesia)

Awakening alarmed and confused in a shallow forest dirt pit, Rio Dewanto finds himself in a deadly game of survival against an unseen, malevolent foe, one who has calculated every move to delight in the misery invoked by hidden messages and recorded wrongdoings. Writer/director Anwar distills an intriguing concept which pays off tremendously in its final act; unfortunately we’re forced to follow a very long road of misdirection and alienation to get there.

Viewers are advised to strap on their patient hats and endeavor to identify with their addled protagonist (emotional investment is key here) as he struggles to unravel a tightly wound mystery with the lives of his wife and child hanging in the balance. Essentially the star of a one-man-show, Dewanto is highly effective in conveying the agonies of a man outclassed, but as the lights come up one can’t help but wonder if Anwar has provided enough substance to sustain his 87-minute tale. Judicious editing might have yielded a far more satisfying short film.

--Aaron Christensen, HorrorHound Magazine

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