Preview: 10 reasons you shouldn’t avoid Chronicle

Chronicle_01

I should hate this film. It’s another film shot in point-of-view style. But not only does Chronicle look interesting, it has the kind of dark undertones all good ‘superhero’ stories should have. Thanks to Fox, I was invited to have a look at parts of the upcoming film, as well as talk with the freshman director, Josh Trank. Here 10 reasons why you shouldn’t miss this one.

The fuck y'all lookin at?

#10 Powers
Most of us have dreamed about having at least one of these a few times before. What makes Chronicle stand out is that it looks at what would happen to believable teens when you take away the typical comic book conventions and see how far a brooding teenager would really take a power trip.

#9 Point-of-view cinematography that doesn’t suck
Think Rec (Spanish horror film), and you get the idea. The cinematography focuses on keeping the camera fixed on the action and centered where it should be. The point-of-view (POV) cinematography doesn’t artificially create tension by aiming it at the ground, while people scream at something we can’t see. Director Josh Trank summed it up well by saying, “Everyone has that friend that can actually use a camera decently. Andrew is one of those guys. He has a good eye for filming and he only gets better as the films goes on. We knew it was important to get that right from the start.”

#8 Decent story concept
Three high school students get superpowers. Sure, that’s the start, but when the powers are realised, the boys begin to do what any of us would do: mess with people. As the powers become stronger, and the bond they share gets more intimate, their friendship is tested as tempers and personal problems shine through. Pranks eventually start to turn to violence as the powers go to their heads.

#7 Director history
Josh Trank doesn’t have much to his name, but he has been in and around Hollywood his whole life. His dad was a documentary filmmaker, and he has done work in films (he was second unit on The Fan) and television. Oh, and he did this short video with some friends, which has been around the internet a few times.

#6 This clip
Though it’s essentially marketing 101 to offer this kind of clip, this does give you a little insight into the three lead characters. This is one of the five clips they showed us. I really want to know what’s in this cave…

#5 Attention to detail
The apparent trend of movies filmed in POV style is that shots appear haphazardly. Filmmakers cut from scene to scene, sometimes mid-dialogue, and then drop you back in the action later on. This can be extremely frustrating. The feeling is that this is to keep it raw. I asked Josh whether this would be seen in this film, he responded with this, “Everything you see in this film was pre-planned. We had the camera angle and the actors’ positions mapped down well before we started filming. Though there are a few moments where it feels raw, we had that all planned from the start.” Good to know.

#4 No major actors
Okay, there are a few people you may know, but it’s not going for the ‘big name’ sell. This is good because an underground film needs to focus on its appeal that should come from the overall package and not actors who are used to sell films.

#3 Characters are not douche bags
Have you noticed that POV films always seem to have douche bags for cast members? By the end you just wish they were all dead. In this film, your three leads are all believable personalities and they have realistic fears and problems. This gives the whole experience a new level of grounding that I have yet to see in POV films.

#2 Good special effects
The great thing about new directors is that they are creative. In the trailer you will see a car pulled across a car park. This was actually done in real life with 11 people pulling it. “We tried to keep everything as real as possible,” said Josh. “We would try most things as grounded as possible. We would only use CG if we had to.”

#1 This trailer
It may not be best trailer ever, but by the end you should, at least, be  intrigued at where it could go…


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Joshua Philpott

Tech MacGyver
Games writer, podcaster and tech wizard. Obsessed with obscure horror films, crazy gadgets and caffeine. Passionate, argumentative and open minded. Freelance writer and co-founder rawDLC.

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  • Anonymous

    I’ve been psyched about this film since I saw the first trailer. Now I’m looking forward to it even more.