TREE is a film that is about a quiet and unassuming family that resides somewhere in Wisconsin. They move into the house when its left to them by Ellies (Kate Berry) father after he has a fatal heart attack.
Soon after moving in and taking control of the farm Tom (Bill Elverman) begins having flashes of his own demise while chopping wood under an old tree but dismisses it. Soon after he finds his daughter Katie (Avery Laine )and his wife are having the visions into the future as well.....and most importantly Ellies father wrote about visions as well. Is this all just in Tims head or is he really seeing how he's going to die? Youll only know if you see this movie at one of the local Film Fests it's been showing at, Or going to the website to buy it from him!
The first thing I noticed about the film was that the locations really looked like Wisconsin and sold the film right away for me. It starts out kind of slow but quickly gets into the meat of the story. I was very impressed with the young girl playing Katie, she gives a great performance with some hard dramatic scenes and with her age thats quite the feat to pull off. The rest of the actors as well give good performances for the most part and seem to really understand their character.
The only part I really felt was badly acted was a very important scene down by the river. All the main characters give good performances but the background extra's playing the townfolk do nothing but stand still and look wooden....this is bad because this is supposed to be a very dramatic scene and it just doent sell because of this. While not the directors fault, I figure he probably had a call for extras in town, He still could have made sure that the energy was present at the very least.
I would have to say though beyond that one instance in the film I really dont have too many other gripes with the film. Its a well written and directed film that deserves a bigger audience. I do want to point out the one other thing that I noticed on the film that Id like to see next time......Thats the running time, at 46 minutes its too long for a short and too short for a feature. This being said the film works well but it's left with a few things I would have liked to have seen explored. One is if the film had been stretched another 40 minutes you could have explored Tom's decent into madness and paranoia even more than it is and really give the film a more claustrophobic feel.
The other point being a plot point that never seemed to be fleshed out and again is part of the scene by the river. Tom asks an important question which I myself had been asking at the time......which was why the whole town was out but everyone just watched and didnt help (youll understand when you see the film). It is never explored beyond that and to me I was left asking if the townspeople know something........anyways I think it could have been used to fix the feel of the scene as well.
All in all though i have to recommend this film very highly. If your looking for a Tense, Well written and intelligent horror film with some amazing dramatic performances......than this is a movie you MUST seek out and see!
This film actually rivals most of the hollywood fluff we call horror nowadays just based on the well written story and acting........Highly Recommended viewing for Any and all horror fans!
go check out the official myspace page here: http://www.myspace.com/treemovie
And their official website here: www.theTreeMovie.com
4 out of 5 Severed Heads